Sobremesa Chronicles

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Mujeres MUDSome of you know that I live in a house as the sole male surrounded by four wonderful ladies. Yet as a man happily subdued, I have been trained to see sexism everywhere I turn.

Sometimes I see sexism even in places where nobody else sees it, which makes me extra cautious about making a comment. But this is not one of those times, and Venezuela’s opposition is not one of those places – the sexism there is rampant, and in-your-face.

Case in point: just a few days ago, we learned that only 10% of the candidates for the opposition’s primaries to select folks for the National Assembly will be women.

This is just plain wrong. And if you disagree with me, think about it … how many national political figures in the opposition are women? Maria Corina. Maybe Evelnyg. Delsa? And … that’s it. Ask yourself why that is.

Let’s take off our blinders and quit giving Diosdado-freakin’-Cabello a valid excuse to attack us with. There is rampant sexism inside the opposition, and we need to come to terms with it.

Have a great weekend, everyone.

One of these things is not like the others
One of these things is not like the others

1 COMMENT

  1. Can you describe one case in which a female candidate with a clear chance of winning her circuit has been passed in favour of a male one?

    • Alejandro, part of the problem is that the “female candidate with a clear chance of winning” hasn’t been developed — because of sexism. At the last MUD march I attended, during the election campaign at the end of 2013, I noticed that every speaker was male. There were a few female students on the stage with the men, but they never got given the microphone. How are people supposed to know if they are electable candidates if they don’t have a chance to give a stump speech? This is pretty basic stuff, it was all well understood by the end of the 19th century.

  2. I am not sure there are many black candidates there, either. The most successful electoral organizations insure this kind of representativeness. It is not a detail.

    • “…black candidates…”

      Not a good example in a country where the 98% of the population shares the same racial profile (brown-skinned mestizo, mix of all the other races).

        • And what do you think the rest is?
          The average Venezuelan is mixed. Almost all Venezuelans but for a few whose parents or greatparents came directly from Europe, are mixed race.

          Almost all Venezuelans have as ultimate paternal ancestor an European (92%) but about 80% of all Venezuelans, if not more, have an ultimate native American or black African maternal ancestor.
          That goes for either side of the DNA passed only through gender (Y chromosome, mitochondrial DNA)

          As for total genetic share: the average Venezuelan is 60.6% European, 23% native American and 16.4% black African. The mean is very close to that as well, it is not like here you have the white and there the mixed and there the black.
          In the MUD, there isn’t, particularly in the biggest urban centres.

          • Kepler,

            You’ve completely confused the concept of race with actual biological ancestry. In other words, you’ve shown that you have no clue what race actually is. Congratulations.

          • Ah, yes, when you are shown to be wrong, just resort to childish insults. Thanks for the laughs Kepler.

      • As Garth2 already said this is not true, but on top of that what matters is not our obscure genetic makeup. Race is about what you look like, not what you are genetically, and in Venezuela if you look darker, you get discrimination. That IS racism.

        • Race is biologically in the genes ( as Kepler very accurately states) and Culturally in the mind (as Earnest states) in that people create representations or social images of what people belonging to a particular race look like even if biologically they share the genes of different races.

          What is most interesting is that character is often heavily influenced by genes and that the history of one peoples specifc gene mix tells a story of how different factors have probablly influenced their ethos and life style .

          For example genetic studies show that our typical genetic makeup suggest that some 3 centuries ago lots of european men mated with a lot of amerindian and negro women , because the europeans in colonial times were held socially superior than people of other races that means that the attitude of those european men towards their non european paramours ( and vice versa) was not of two equal persons but one where male superiority was accentuated by social or cultural factors making it less likely for them to form stable couples or families , where the women felt flattered that an european male gave her his attention and the gift of a child but where the parent didnt assumme the normal responsibilities of Parental care .

          Also its been shown that sometimes the experience of certain races marks their outlook towards life and that this outlook is transferred to the children even where raciallly such experience ceased to form part of the parents life. People who for centuries lived as slaves developed certain attitudes which survived in their offspring long after they ceased being slaves .

          The problem with racism in Venezuela is that because most people share a more or less similar racial look , and mothers brothers and close relatives often have different racial characteristics its more difficult to develop the kind of rascism that you can find where the races have kept themselves separate .

          Even if some form of racism does exist it is less virulent and prevalent than in other places .!!

          • Bill, race is a social construct. That is why “black” is a race and “white” is a race, even if those say nothing about a person’s origin but lots about their social status. Also, unless you’ve got those slave diaries where slave women speak of how joyful they felt to have their white male masters impregnate them, you are speaking with absolutely no basis for such a ludicrous claim. They did not romance them or made them feel as if they had something special, they just felt entitled to them and these days we call that rape.
            Also the experiences of people of similar races are not so much inherited as they are perpetuated by social circumstances and structures that reinforce the attitudes and systems that generate these outlooks you speak of. If outlooks were inherited and biological it would be impossible to speak of social change.
            Also please give links to where you got all these studies that show various things that you mention. Thanks.

          • Earnest . race can serve as a tag for the identification of culturally created separate social identities , skin colour is just what is most noticiable in a person , but the habit of creating insidious divisions and distinctions between human beings is very old widespread and deeply rooted . For example the current regimes division between the hallowed revolutionary heroes and the subhuman escualidos is just as loathful a form of discrimination and prejudice as the raw racism of yore. It hides behind an ideological mask but it is just as dehumanizing and perverse as the distinction between people of different races. Let start with that.!!

            More to the point genetic studies have determined that the venezuelan genetic makeup was born of the coupling of european men with amerindian and black women some three centuries ago ( I read this I didnt make it up) . Now if you known anything about the psychology of sexual attraction , multiple studies show that women,specially those from non european modern societies feel particularly attracted to higher status males , regardless of looks , mens tastes are socially indiscriminate and llike a good looking women regardless of her social status.For women instead male social status acts as a sexua magnet . Masses of women are shown pictures of handsome guys wearing clothes that reveal a humble social status and then pictures of not so handsome men dressed as doctors or having high status occcupations . A preponderance of those women felt more attracted to the latter more than to the former .

            3 centuries ago amerindian and black women of that time werent all that different . social status was associated with european ancestry or looks , much more than today . Indian men were not very nice to their women , this is documented in Humboldts writings . Some indian women on having a daughter would drown her rather than have her suffer the fate of an indian females in a male dominated tribe. Amerindian women were mistreated , beaten up, raped , forced to do the most heavy work and generally scorned for only the he man warrior and hunter was deserving of respect . Look it up !!

            There were in colonial times very few european women , remember spaniards did not come as colonizers but as get rich quick adventurers, and the amerindian and black woman they found were attractive and moreover also attracted to them . Of course nowadays we are so besotted with the cult of the Victim , with victimolatry that we have to think rape , thats very naive .!! The reality of the matter from what we know of the genetics of our origins and psychological studies is that it was perfectly natural for amerindian and black women ( specially the former) to feel attracted to all those high status wiveless europeans and for them to think that if their children had european blood they would have a better chance in life than if they were pure black or amerindian. They were not stupid !!

            The other thing you miss is that history has a way of modelling the mind and emotional ethos of people once sharing a similar form of life so that even when the circumstances of their life change over time , they retain to a degree as ingrained subliminal habits of thought and behaviour which developed generation after generation during the life of their ancestors. The clean slate theory of human nature is long debunked the superstition that if you just change external conditions somewhat people will magically change their form of thinking and acting overnight has been proben scientifically a humbug. There are reams of studies dealing with this fact . I suggest you broaden your reading preferences , the literature supporting the view I suggest is overhwhelming .

            We have a tendency to sentimentalize human narratives , to transform them into cowboys and indian or cop rober stories , to delight our selves thinking in term of the goody goodies and the meany meanies fighting it out for the sake of justice and freedom and the noble instincts of the poorest as victims.

            When studying the human condition ( and observing how it operates) I try to leave all nice moral self flatering notions aside and try and understand them as objectively as possible . This is against the grain in our culture but its the only intellectually responsible position . I suggest you bite the bullet and try it sometime.!!.

          • I am completely uninterested in your unsubstantiated attempt at a analysing the psychology of slaves. In case you have not noticed, you are a screen name spitting out facts with not a single link to back up anything you say. Your opinions are very cute but they do not constitute any bullets for nobody to bite. Either refer to actual research or quit pushing your opinions as if they were gospel.

          • OK, I think two people misinterpreted what I wrote here and one of them is you.

            Let’s put it more clearly.

            1) There is a lot of racism in Venezuela
            2) People who have strong non-European phenotypes are under-represented in the political leaders of
            major cities – and in many other places. That’s simple maths.
            3) indeed, race is a social construct, a very problematic one, not based on genetics but on perception.
            4) most Venezuelans are mixed, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t mind having different groups representing the phenotype spectrum – because of 2 and 3
            5) you, Bill, incredibly simply our history. You quote Humboldt where it suits you. If you read him – and he was
            NOT the Bible and he wouldn’t have considered himself as one- you would see he had several cases where native Americans would rather die than go along with Europeans. There were other cases and things started to change particularly in the XVI century when mestizos fell out of the encomienda
            6) status of women varied a bit across native American societies

            Let me guess, Bill: your skin colour is lighter than that of the average Venezuelan. Am I right?

          • Earnest follows the common troll practice of arogantly demanding a panoply of erudite and academic research and quotes where his ignorance prevents him from even attempting to respond to someone elses opinions but of offering none himself to support his own !! I made some six very specific statements and he didnt even attempt to address any of them. Just a smoke screen rethorical blast supposed to answer them all !! very puerile !! From his response I have no interest in his capacity to offer a rational reply.

            I stand behind everything I wrote above , Ive spent quite a few years studying and reading book after book, monograh after monograpch on these subjects (much of it recorded in my own private notes of some 15 years) but if he doenst like what I wrote he can do his own research and present his own supported opinion. on why he thinks any one of those points is wrong .

            With Kepler is different , his problem is that he reads interesting things but although intelligent doenst connect the dots , he carries a chip on his shoulder and will fight your opinion even if often he doesnt actually bother to try and understand what your saying . Sometimes he gets angry at things I state where I basically agree with him . I can respect him but have a hard time figuring him out . I suspect he is a purebred technical person with little background in the humanities , his mistakes are typical of the kind.

            There is one point he raises where same as he I would prefer to have more information , its the indian treatment of their women , I do remember vividly the Humboldt passage and more contemporary testimony on the orinoco indians poor treatment of their females but if he has more information (which he very likely has) I would appreciate if he would kindly pass it on to me . Im really curious about the subject . I could find very little on how the orinoco indians of colonial times treated their women .

            I usually find many things to learn from what kepler reads , some which importance and exact meaning he doesnt really realize !!

            ,

          • Bill,

            Without entering the main fray on this topic, I would like to comment on your comment about the treatment of women by indigenous men. Any observations about one particular tribe’s behavior or culture cannot be extrapolated to others. At the time of the discovery and exploration of the New World, there were thousands of different tribes and cultures with a vast variety of customs. One tribe might have been extremely warlike and aggressive, while a neighboring tribe might have been passive and docile. One tribe may have treated women worse than domestic animals, while another was dominated by women. Furthermore, any culture will be changed quickly simply from contact with a more technically advanced civilization (sort of like a cultural “Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle”).

            On average, though, the condition of women has vastly improved in ALL parts of the world as a result of modern civilization.

        • Read again, dude, I said “same racial profile”, which means “EL MISMO PERFIL RACIAL”, which is HOW DO THE PEOPLE LOOK, regardless their genetic, chromosomes or whatever other stuff that isn’t at plain sight.

          My commnet is about how stupid is the very idea of racism in a country like Venezuela where everybody looks the damn same save for a few milimeters in difference in the facial features, resulting in anybody who tries to be racist exceeds at being just a stupid douchebag.

          And yes, I’ll openly point and laugh at any racist, because they are that imbeciles.

          /////

          Lee de nuevo, viejo, yo dije “same racial profile”, que significa “EL MISMO PERFIL RACIAL” , o sea, COMO LUCE LA GENTE, sin importar la genética, cromosomas o cualquier otra cosa que no esté a plena vista.

          Mi comentario trató sobre cuán estúpida es la idea del racismo en un país como Venezuela donde todo el mundo luce prácticamente igual salvo por unos pocos milímetros de diferencia en algunos rasgos faciales, resultando en que cualquiera que trate ser racista sólo resalta en ser un imbécil estúpido.

          Y sí, apuntaré y me reiré a carcajadas de cualquier racista, porque son así de imbéciles.

  3. Honestly, I can’t care less if the candidate I’m voting for is a man or a woman, because for me that doesn’t affect at all his/her capabilities.

    I would be more wary to check their record, seeing how most of the “chavistas arrepentidos” are resulting to be wall-jumper toads less reliable than Starscream, who’ll go back to chaburrismo when anything goes wrong, which we have plenty of examples to see now, like arias la gallina batracia cárdenas, hediondoro quintero and like a dozen more deputees that went full into backstabbing mode to support the recent habilitantes, and more recently ricardo “gordo párgula” sánchez and henry falcón, who are happily spreading the idiocy of the “gringo invasion-bombing” crap (And falcón is also supossed to be going to support the rice queen’s upcoming candidature…)

  4. A large portion of the opposition consist of females , often they are the most militant and outspoken , I would wager that there is probably a bigger propportion of women among opposition grass roots activist than there are male . and yet this does not result in a bigger share of females in the list of oppo candidates . This is neither ideal nor desirable .

    Dont believe its deliberate , that there is a dark hidden effort to deny female candidates a place in the ballot box , there is some other cultural mechanism which prevents females from being postulated as candidates , there are so many competent and intelligent women in our country , so many that shine in the professions , that its something of a puzzle . If its sexism its not a deliberate conscious sexism but one which manifests itself more insidously .

    Have heard more than once women say that a female candidate should not be postulated because they cant win because the country ( women included) are for the most part Machistas . Has this ever bee studied seriously , the impact of covert machismos in the way women curtail their ambitions because they dont think they can be accepted or why men shun the rise of woman leaders ??

    Wish it could be shown to be more than an old wives tale. !! (awful expression but the one that came easiest to mind) .

    • Study what should be obvious observation? It’s a good ol’ boys world and in Venezuela most women support the status quo.Venezuelan women are their own worst enemies.I am sure many when they come to this blog think they have to compete with the men and adjust their comments accordingly.It’s a good ol’ boys world dear and things will change when women change them….because the men will not be the ones to make things happen.

      • Fire: Im afraid that cronyism exists among both males and females all over the world, it one natural way humans join together in mutually supportive social circles , it exists for example in every girls and boys school (including co ed universities) only female networks can be even tighter and more hermetic than those of males ,.

        Perhaps male cronyism (old boys networks) are a factor in preventing some competent women to rise to leadership positions in certain fields , of course they also leave out the males which dont belong to the circle so both genders can be affected . Thats a shame !! Still there are plenty of women who have made it to the top without their feminity being a handicap , one might mention in Latin America Dilma. Bachelet and in Europe Frau Merkel and Lady Tatcher. ( few can doubt their influence in the politics of their respective countries)., now how did they do it ??

        There are countries where old boy networks are stronger than in others , but things are changing and one can see more and more women rise to positions of prominence in all the world , even in countries where machismo still is strong.. Why cant that happen in Venezuela ?? Is male cronyism stronger in Venezuela than in other countries ??

  5. I think that to discuss the sex of the angels is kind of irrelevant… Women like less to get involved in politics anywhere in the world in the same way that they don’t like that much to become mechatronic engineers. It’s hard to accept it, but most of the times women and men have just different interests and tastes.

    • Yes Marc, and for centuries women just “liked less to get involved” in the workforce too. You see, they just had these “different interests and tastes” which made them stay at home and clean up after their husbands. Then suddenly in the second half of the 20th century it wasn’t a climate of sexism that was challenged, but rather it was “women’s different interests and tastes” that began to change and they suddenly wanted to be able to work and vote and wow!

      So, moral of the story is that nothing really needs to change here. Its just that women are different and don’t really want to be involved in making decisions that are important for their country.

      • You really are a fool, aren’t you?

        Politics is dominated by men for fairly clear innate and biological reasons.

        • Yes Hector, just as the workforce and education was dominated by men 50 years ago for “clear innate and biological reasons”???

          Turns out that today more women get bachelor’s degrees than men. Whoops! So much for the clear biological reasons dipshit.

          • “Turns out that today more women get bachelor’s degrees than men.”

            Exactly, so that’s a great evidence that there’s absolutely nothing inhibiting them from getting involved in politics in our times. They just don’t want to.

          • That’s not evidence of anything.

            In the US 2012 elections, 53% of the voters were women.

            Moreover, 47% of the voters were college graduates; 24% had a high school education or less.

            The first indicates that women are more interested in politics than men. The second would indicate that educational attainment plays a direct role in political participation and with more women enrolled than men in college, long-term there will be more women involved in politics, as a ratio to men, over time.

          • What is this logic? All that proves is women are intelligent, capable and interested in obtaining an education. It proves the education system is open to women. What happens after a bachelors degree and whatever road blocks exist there have no relation to “having a degree”.

      • Question: and the pro-government women want to participate more than the opposition ones? Is it also a matter of interests and tastes? how does that work?

  6. I see things differently. And I would ask:

    Are there any women in the lower echelons of the opposition who show promise by dint of: preparation (bona fide professional training a plus); ability to verbalize organized, coherent and balanced thoughts on practical matters of state; and backing from male and female colleagues (cuchi panismo excepted)?

    If the answer is yes, then shame on the MUD. If no, deeper questions need to be asked.

    It is true. Chavismo promotes both genders. But what good is affirmative action among those who simply spout well the rhetoric and propaganda? What good is a society of women that aid and abet a government that so easily discards the rule of law, jails politicians who don’t agree with it, allows crime to go unpunished, and simply waits for a single executive ‘dedazo’ ?

  7. Speaking of sexism; Juan, I was a bit surprised at the lack of a word from the moderator on the use of the word “bitch” (see previous comments thread) to describe a woman whose views the writer finds offensive. First, because I have always assumed that this blog is about civilised debate, not personal abuse. And secondly because of the use of gender as a derogatory term.

    • What would we do without our “hypersensitive” moralizers? Especially those who claim never to use a derogatory term for one gender, but may have no issue with thinking or using a derogatory term for another. Take Diosdado Cabello as an example. Seems to me, most of us who congregate on these boards would readily agree that he’s a “bastard” in the usual way that the derogatory term is tossed about. But those who may have even used the term, think nothing of the gross insult that the term is to Diosdado’s mother (please pass the hankie).

      And sexism also applies to the moralizers who think nothing of allowing in their homes or outside it, an occasional “dirty ” word of two from men, but God forbid, women should enjoy the occasional expletive/release.

      • I concurr with Syd that the preocupation with bringing hoity toity political correctness to censure the normal uses of languages is both frivolous and silly !!, a bitch is a bitch is a bitch !! I think this is mainly an anglo saxon folly , indeed, in spanish to designate a male as a dog is as offensive as calling a women a bitch .!!

        • Bill Bass,

          I think you might be confusing civilizing politeness with political correctness. One can ‘call a spade a spade’ without using words like ‘bitch’. I might use the word ‘bitch’ in private, but on a public forum it tends to incite aggressions rather than educate.When emotions are a part of a discussion objectivity goes down the drain.In a debate it tends to terminate in chaos and embitterment rather than in clarity and consensus.

          Political correctness is very different from polite discussion.

          • If your position is that certain cuss words should be excised because they are in breach of the standards of civilized writing etiquette , I stand corrected , if your position however is that certain cuss words should be excised primarily because they refer to females , then I beg to disagree .

            The thing of course is that in venezuela ordinary colloquial language is not that prim , what might be offensive when written in english might be within the bound of the acceptable in spanish as used in Venezuela . When writing in english I sometimes miss the splendid expressive effect that the use of certain venezuela procacities can give to ones prose.!!

          • Those who see no issue with using cuss words in the home, yet turn all prim and proper on these boards, are hypocrites who should set up a sideline salon, where they can pose just so, while sitting on one cheek and sipping their tea with an outstretched pinky finger.

            Of all the problems facing Vzla, why is this ludicrous deviation even a topic?

          • Bill Bass

            “If your position is that certain cuss words should be excised because they are in breach of the standards of civilized writing etiquette ”

            Exactly

            As for the fact that the use of cuss words in Venezuela is more acceptable, I suggest that a separate blog be used for this.This blog is in English and it is International.

            No debate goes anywhere in English with insults, cuss words, and emotional displays.

          • If one wants to use them at home …fine….but in public debate they tend to ruin everything…this is a practical, and not moral decision.

            I personally sometimes, (though rarely) use them at home, but try to always refrain in public company so as not to incite unwanted passions…and ruin it for all.

    • I edited the word out. Of course I don’t condone the use of the term! But deleting the entire comments thread is a slippery slope…

  8. WOWoeeee… This IS a very sensitive discussion. Many of the above comments carry (in my opinion) a point or more, BUT the sole proposition to discuss the topic is SEXIST per se! Ideally, and supposedly, allegedly, when a candidate, he or she, runs for office he does it on the basis of knowledge, experience and yes, AVAILABILITY. Politics is a 365/24 job, no matter on what side you are. Precisely because in our Latin culture woman has historically assumed, and still does, a greater part of the responsibility that goes along with family most of them do not have the availability for such a demanding task as politics. I am sure you will find a much larger proportion of women in the lower echelons of political parties and organizations in which it is possible to share time between family and political work. So, it is not an easy topic to deal with. I sometimes wonder how MCM’s kids are doing with all the exposure (usually unfair, menacing and insulting) their mother is subject to. By the way, two names come to my mind besides MCM: Delsa Zolórzano and Lilliana Hernández. Finally, gender doesn’t promise much any way. I doubt any of you would support such known political ladies (??) as Luisa O. Díaz, Iris Varela, Delcy Rodríguez, María Cristina Iglesias, Jackeline Farías, Tibisay Lucena, María Estela Morales, something Osorio, and many others here and there.

    • some good observations, ED, which I share. Except for this one: “BUT the sole proposition to discuss the topic is SEXIST per se!”

      I think the discussion is more about balance in the gender ranks. In any event, I welcome all points raised.

  9. World-wide, there is a large disparity between the numbers of men and women who choose to enter politics. In the current U.S. Congress there are currently 362 men and 76 women in the House of Representatives and in the Senate, there are 17 women and 83 men.

    Firstly, considering the dire straights in which this country finds itself, is this really what we want to be talking about? Win the war first. When we have the luxury of political stability, then we can debate social change.

    Secondly, the Chavista women “in power”, are all fairly passive puppets of the Chavista male leadership that can be counted upon to carry out whatever orders they receive, no matter how immoral or unprincipled.

    • Right you are, Roy. Same reasoning goes for all this rigamarole within MUD’s members… FGS, let’s get these felons out first and then we’ll have time to discuss delicacies…

  10. Maybe they are using Mario Silva as advisor? Remember his comments on Cilia?

    “Este es un continente de caudillos, compadre, y la mujer tiene que estar en la sombra. Por muchas vainas místicas, vainas espirituales, la misma mujer venezolana le gusta el hombre de poder. Y esas son vainas que yo mezclo… que son psicosociales, que tienen que ver con el liderazgo de una persona. Chávez, teniendo su mujer, o las que tuvo, no me interesa si las tuvo o no las tuvo, era un hombre misterioso para las mujeres porque tenía dos divorcios, y siempre era un hombre que le agradaba mucho a las mujeres. Y esa vaina tenía mucho de pega. Y yo se lo dije en una oportunidad a Hanoi: ¿Coño habrá alguien que le diga a Nicolás que deje de estar mostrando a Cilia? Que se mantenga como líder, y no como que “aquí está mi mujer, un besito” y vainas así por el estilo. Esta no es una campaña norteamericana, esta es una campaña latinoamericana.”

    Por vainas místicas pues…

    • Es que con nicolasno su pendejada de estar berreando 24/7 sobre su esposa es para asegurarle a todo el mundo que él no es marico.

  11. Discussing publicly about sexism makes it worst.

    If you really want to reduce sexism, instead of talking about it (pointing that some people see differences in gender, hence reinforcing the idea), you should be more specific and talk about the reasons for a particular women not being postulated, avoiding making a fuss if sexism is the reason, and simply reject the sexism argument like any other invalid argument.

    When you make a fuss, you reinforce the idea … think about it

  12. “It is true. Chavismo promotes both genders”.

    Right, therefore our infamous machismo won’t be much of an issue with Chavez’s Fraudmatic automatic re-election system in place.

    Anyway, our political women have proven to be just as incompetent and corrupt as men.

    Take a good look at them, get used to these atrocious LadyThieves, as Smartmatic ain’t Sexist:

    http://www.noticias24.com/venezuela/noticia/95574/el-protagonismo-de-las-mujeres-en-la-administracion-del-presidente-chavez/

  13. This discussion is intellectually stimulating, but unless your average voter is a sociology professor, it is going nowhere. Winning elections is about MARKETING. You are up against incumbents who have wrapped themselves in the mantle of the Eternal Comandante. Daniela Cobello is singing their praises.
    Forgive me for saying so but SEX SELLS. In a country world-famous for beautiful women, is this the best you can do?

    I know. I am a pig. But Jesus loves me anyway.

  14. Wasting time on intellectual “sexism” conjectures on our putrid, corrupt political system is beyond laughable. I’d would say women have a tendency to be slightly more educated and competent, if given the opportunity, just as smart if not smarter, but much more importantly in our beloved CorruptZuela, perhaps a bit less inclined to STEAL every cent in sight.

    That said, all of our detestable, crooked Chavista women may be proving me wrong about feminine morality or values as being less rotten than men’s. They are voracious THIEVES too.

  15. So Venezuelan women should celebrate, and look in the mirror even more than they already do (sorry, low blow).

    Even now that we all KNOW that about 80% of our voting population is against Chavismo (excludes the Dead, Chinese, Cubans, etc), they will stay in power with Masburro, winning the already decided elections by about 55%.

    Write that down. This is when Chavez’s automated Fraudmatic voting system will come in handy, because they will need BIG, MASS Fraud to win, not just a few hundred thousand votes to tip the scale in Diablodado’s Ladies’ favor.. again.

    With a more traditional paper system of populated, secret voting, without the electronic smartmatic boost to the usual fraud, they would stand no chance against 80% of anti-chavistas now out there. None. Because anti-chavistas and volunteers will be everywhere policing, so the monumental fraud now required will have to be in-transit, e-fraud..

    They needed a new, electronic tool to steal Millions and Millions of votes this time (if not coerced due to threats and lack of secrecy). They’ve got it.

  16. Final thought: I’m so convinced of the utter sinister, diabolical nature of Chavismo that I will venture here this highly plausible theory:

    Chavez — and Cabello now (a replica of Chavez without the Charisma, a diabolical, sinister puppeteer behind the scenes and probably with the true power).. they deliberately want Women to be in high, public office. I contend that they manipulate the women from behind the screens. They are prettier, softer puppets, if you will, many times. (See, for Cabello and others, it works much better than manipulating male Dumbo’s like Masburro from the shadows)

    Chavismo has USED women to get away with murder, literally and figuratively. You see, women appear to be more affable, docile, nurturing, with good intentions, more believable in many cases than men. Our people think of women as their mothers, daughters, sisters, so we tend to trust them more on delicate, radical matters (Judicial matters, notably).

    Especially in our machista society. I’m sure Chavez and Diablodado know that: use softer, more likable women in key positions to evoke less fear, and of course, to gain the all important women’s vote. Chavez convinced poor, uneducated Corrupzuelan women, seduced them in fact. (Google it up).

    And men are often easier to tame by women in power, as married guys or the blog’s author here know all-too well. Chavismo’s tactical utilization of women, giving them some apparent powers, has been diabolically smart.

    • I think you just made my point. Recruit more women! Pretty and soft is nice, but I am thinking smart, professional, and easy-on-the-eyes in a business suit.

      • Obviously won’t solve the problem. Look at Argentina, then, in case you like the numerous Chavista women.. the point is they are not, really, in power in Corruptzuela.

      • What a dilemma for the next elections: choose between our Macho Mud Mess, and Female Friendly Chavismo.. That’s another advantage of having tour own great asexual automated elections system, Fraudmatic: Mujeres con Masburro al poder!

  17. I think Neidy Rosal is a very competent politician:

    https://twitter.com/neidyrosal

    She is also an engineer. It would be good to have a couple more of engineers at the National Assembly.
    Instead, we have lots of male military or lawyers or Italy-born entrepreneurs and the like.

  18. Questions for the guys (specially those in Venezuela):

    How many of you cook at home for the family on a regular, daily basis?
    How many of you would be willing to be a stay-at-home dad while your wife goes to work?
    How many of you changed diapers without being asked for when you had little children?
    How many of you iron your own shirts?
    Who has a wife that makes more money than you and you actually feel proud of that?
    How many of you praise boobs implants?

    And for the girls: how many of you still believe that all of the above are women’s duties?

    Many women in Venezuela still think that the house and kids (and the husband) are all her responsibility, plus working full time . It’s like they are trapped between the 50’s housewife mindset and the feminist movement of the 70’s.

    And of course, while the husband keeps getting everything done for them on the home front, he will do nothing to encourage or support the wife to pursue a carreer as demanding as politics.

    • Given that men are the most despicable creatures walking on this planet, wouldn’t be easier and better to just marry to a woman? That’s what I did.

      • I am amazed to see this discussion about sexism and political participation of women in Venezuela because, frankly, not many people outside very small feminist or academic circles (with very few feminist researchers) are talking about this right now. Now, what is even more amazing is to see the blunt sexism on the part of many participants, not to mention how unapologetic they are about it! In Venezuela we are very, very far from even beginning to understand these issues, and the political arena is just a very good example of that (the comments here are just very illustrative of how ingrained machismo is in our society, as some men think that because they cook, they are not machistas).

        The article is very relevant and the MUD should listen. I commend Juan Cristobal for writting this.

        I’ve worked in the past with women in political parties, and the common complaint you would hear over and over again is that they do the nitty-gritty work of mobilizing people, getting the word out on events, helping in every possible aspect of planning, drafting political strategies, doing background research on issues, and a long etc. But when election time comes, they are never allowed to run or are not even given an opportunity to be part of any list. Only very few women are allowed such privilege.

        True, the PSUV and the Maduro regime are doing better off on these issues than the MUD. But beware that it might only be a smoke and mirrors game, as I argue here http://www.eluniversal.com/opinion/150317/cesar-miguel-y-las-mujeres

    • Answers:

      1) I am an excellent cook and I cook.

      2) That question is equivalent to “do you want to be unemployed?” obviously, no I don’t.

      3) I did, frequently.

      4) I don’t iron anything. We just fold the clothes out of the dryer.

      5) We make more or less the same, I don’t think that is an issue.

      6) I like natural, perky boobs with puffy, sensitive nipples.

      I know, you would love to meet a guy like me, but sorry, I am taken.

  19. Let’s face it folks, most women are way too wise to care about politics , but if a woman is unfortunate enough to marry a politician ,all his thoughts will really be hers anyway ;and in this way she’ll what she wants without catching the blame.

    hehe

  20. Gender is no marker of superior political acumen or ability , the best suited should be chosen regardless of gender , culture and customs has unfortunately made it less likely that women involve themselves in active full time politics , thus it is logical than in a country with our kind of culture and customs less women would involve themselves as active politicians , this is a great waste because there are bound to be many women of great ability who wont be appearing as candidates for office, ideally there should be more . MUD should worry about two things only : one is the candidates electability ( and whatever contributes or hampers such electability ) and its personal ability ( including the character that allow such ability to manifest itself in practice) . Once those two factors are taken care of , gender should be irrelevant . !!

    I doubt that the low number of female MUD candidates is a sign of sexism , men have been longer in the game and are bound to be more numerous , still MUD should do everything possible to encourage competent electable women to appear in their roster of candidates .

    Im not inside the MUD leadership so I have no info on what has led to the current rostes of candidates to be chosen , I do hope that their gender has not been a factor to prevent their selection .!!

    The notion of choosing a women as candidate just to emblematize ones commitment to the equlity of women seems to me abominable.

  21. What a dilemma for the next elections: choose between our Macho Mud Mess, and Female Friendly Chavismo.. That’s another advantage of having tour own great asexual automated elections system, Fraudmatic: Mujeres con Masburro al poder!

  22. I agree 100% Juan and what is worse is that Venezuela is a matriarcal country where women are sometimes the sole workers in the family and, in general, work more and are more educated than men. Seeing so few women in poltics is amazing.

    I applaud your four wonderful ladies in your life that have done a great job.

    • yes, Bruni, you’ve been marketing that idea for a long time. But in a matriarchal society, women rule a population, they earn more than men, they are not abused by men (in the home), they are over-represented on the boards of companies and firms, they have an active voice in the organization of their major religion, they are over-represented in the faculties of engineering, etc. Do I need to go on?

      Perhaps it’s time you defined your version of matriarchal society. For nowhere does Venezuela show up
      here or
      here.

      • The Venezuelan family has been described as matricentric by Alejandro Moreno which is not quite the same as matriarcal , women dont rule , they are more victimized by men than anything , but they do assumme (not always successfully ) the burden of attempting to care for their offspring once their fathers abandon them. This form of family life is highly disfunctional in most cases and results in children who cannot develop their characters and abilities to their full potential . This is the source of many of Venezuelas tragic failures as a society and as a country. !!

        • Bill Bass..

          “The word matriarchy, for a society politically led by females, especially mothers, who also control property, is often interpreted to mean the general opposite of patriarchy, but it is not an opposite (linguistically, it is not a parallel term).[7][8][9] According to Peoples and Bailey, the view of anthropologist Peggy Reeves Sandy is that matriarchies are not a mirror form of patriarchies but rather that a matriarchy “emphasizes maternal meanings where ‘maternal symbols are linked to social practices influencing the lives of both sexes and where women play a central role in these practices'”.

          This is pure semantics of course, and I hate to be nit picky butI myself have first hand experience in a family of such in Venezuela.Women were poor, but they ALONE ruled, and usually brought up the family without help from fathers.Men were by the wayside, contributing little or nothing to the family dynamic beyond biology.This is the common way in most small towns in Venezuela and among the the people of the barrios of Caracas.

          • Fire: Your observations on the heroic role of Venezuelan women in trying to bring up their children under very difficult conditions matches the description of the Venezuelan marginal family appearing in the studies of pbro Alejandro Moreno !! Precisely because the term matriarchy didnt exactly match the use of the term applicable in Venezuela he created the term Matricentric . I respectfully suggest you try and search the internet for some of his published writings. He is a bona fide professional anthropologist and highly respected social researcher and has a host of field studies to support his view of Venezuelan marginal society !!

          • My reply was to your comment that starts with, “The Venezuelan family has been described as matricentric….”

      • Syd, maybe I did not use the right term, but I still believe the Venezuelan society is led by women. The problem with venezuelan women (and I am going to be extremely politically incorrect) is that they are not feminist at all. In fact they are machistas and yield a machista society that values men more than women.

        Do you know any woman that calls herself a feminist openly in Venezuela? I don’t. I know women in non-traditional roles, women that have been pioneers in their area, women that have fought for democracy, women of great personality and great power and yet, not one of them have ever called herself a feminist.

        • If you study the humanities at university in North America (including Mexico), the chances are very high if not certain that, like it or not, you will be required to familiarize yourself with some basic feminist texts and history. I’m not sure that applies in Venezuela. I don’t know why. In areas like the public sector, women are well represented in Venezuela, which seems paradoxical to me because there is not the kind of alertness an discussion over on the issue that you see in North America. But the Venezuelan opposition leadership, that’s another story.

          • Cherry pickings of bytes in public speaking make Chávez look like Einstein. I believe he was convinced of what he said, regarding the need for women to be active and gender-equal participants in the “revolution”. But as he said so at 2:16, note the “muequita” from Rafael Correa.

            I don’t think it’s necessary to be or call oneself a feminist in order to push ahead in any society. For what does that accomplish? Glass ceilings exist aquí, allá y acullá. And no self-styled label will change that. Fact is, social change is always a slow process, even when the head of government dictates that change. (In Chávez’s case, I believe that the change he advocated was more in name only. But I give him credit for at least ‘vociferando’ that need for change.)

            And like other parts of the world, I believe that one can find women who call themselves feminists, in and around university campuses. For generally, the conditioning of women as objects, as passive receptacles, is so entrenched, that that conditioning is not something that is likely to change in one generation, two, three, or more.

            As well, labels are silly. Basically most women of sound mind just try to get through the day, doing what needs to be done at work, if it applies, and/or in their home, for their children, and for their husbands (if they deserve it … hehehe).

          • Oh, yeah, most women in the Western world couldn’t care less about feminism. They understand that hating men is not that healthy. Unless women live in a Islamic society, feminism is not that trendy anymore.

          • Heh, the chaburrista current hour’s contradiction: “Feminist women, following a guy who claimed ‘I’ll give you what’s yours tonight!'”

            ///

            Heh, la contradicción chaburra de la hora: “Mujeres feministas, que siguen a un tipo que solía decir ‘¡Esta noche te doy lo tuyo!'”

        • Bruni, you are partly right. Women in Venezuela do tend to reproduce patriarchal society and take pride in the fact that they do work both in and outside the home. It is just part of the culture and they accept it as “natural”. French philospher Pierre Bourdieu offers an explanation for this, in the context of his book “Male Domination”. He says:

          “The dominated apply categories constructed from the point of view of the dominant to the relations of domination, thus making them appear as natural.”

          He adds

          “Symbolic violence is instituted through the adherence that the dominated cannot fail to grant to the dominant (and therefore to the domination) when, to shape her thought of him, and herself, or, rather, her thought of her relation with him, she has only cognitive instruments that she shares with him and which, being no more than the embodied form of the relation of domination, cause that relation to appear as natural; or, in other words, when the schemes she applies in order to perceive and appreciate herself, or to perceive and appreciate the dominant (high/low, male/female, white/black, etc.), are the product of the embodiment of the – thereby naturalized – classifications of which her social being is the product.”

          On the issue of women calling themselves feminists, I have to say that there are a lot of women – particularly those who are aligned with the Chávez/Maduro regime – who do call themselves feminists. http://www.telesurtv.net/news/Venezuela-clausura-Primer-Congreso-de-Mujeres-20150308-0041.html

          Meanwhile in the opposition, or within the MUD, this issue – and many other issues related to women (political participation, abortion, sexual and reproductive health and rights, prostitution, trafficking of women and girls, violence against women, sexual violence in particular, to name a few) seem to be absolutely absent from their agendas. Why is that? It’s a good question. I suspect there is a lot of stigma attached to certain issues (like calling oneself feminist) and women’s issues in general are viewed as lesser important than other affairs that seem to be considered more crucial in the mind of Venezuelan politicians – including female politicians.

  23. “Case in point: just a few days ago, we learned that only 10% of the candidates for the opposition’s primaries to select folks for the National Assembly will be women.”

    Sigh. Correlation does not prove causation. Never. Not even if it is 100% correlation. Simply, never.

    • “Correlation does not prove causation.”

      Human beings have been making that mistake, and will continue making it, ever since “reasoning” began. Conclusions reached in this manner produce spectacular fallacies that haunt us to this day.

  24. I insist that the problem with women in politics in today’s Corruptzuela is that it’s just a “parapeto”. A Machiavellian, brillian set up by Chavez.

    We know who really has the power in Corruptzuela: that sinister, macabre Thug, Diosdado Cabello, and his Bribed Military pawns. Masburro is already a dumb puppet of sorts, taking all the abuse as “president”, while the real monsters in control, Multi-Millionaire families focus secretly on all their gargantuan stealing activities.

    The women are used as popular speakers, softer facades, kinder voices, better looking actresses, so that our uneducated, rather machista populace has an easier time swallowing the rancid totalitarian pills they get everyday. It’s a mask, that also won many feminine votes during early Chabrutismo.

    • One way or the other, Floyd, I ask you:

      should the MUD not have more than 10% of women as deputies? (the pox on Chavismo, stop looking at Chavistas for a moment)

      • Sure, the MUD and any political movement in Vzla should have more women. The twisted ruse I’ve attempted to describe can work both ways.

        The only problems one could foresee is that women as deputies are more susceptible to get pushed around, verbally AND physically as we’ve seen so many times out in public, amid the Regime’s barbaric swarms. It would be uglier to watch than it already is.

        But again, don’t worry. Chavez’s brain fart, “Smartmatic” is not sexist, it seems. So when Masburrismo wins the next elections by 55% (although they have less than 20% happy enchufados of real support), the women will continue to be used as mannequins — “deputies” or even “ministras” if you prefer.

          • As I said: stop thing about Chavismo for a single moment. I got it they are using them as a ruse.
            I think we can think independently from them. It is just the right thing to do.
            The fact some time Chavismo says it’s 6pm doesn’t mean it is not 6pm. And again, here we have to!

          • Didn’t I answer your question already about the MUD, regardless of Chavismo?

            On a separate note, I’m not sure Corruptzuela, (clearly an under-educated, machista society – in general, of course) is a ready for women as Presidents or TRUE political leaders (as opposed to today’s puppets in Vzla) as other countries are. MCM would be eaten alive is we were lucky enough to have her as President.

          • “The fact some time Chavismo says it’s 6pm doesn’t mean it is not 6pm. And again, here we have to!”

            Dude, I wouldn’t believe a chaburro when they told me the time even if they paid me with Google stocks.

            /////

            Viejo, yo no le creería la hora a un chaburro ni aunque me pagara con acciones de Google.

  25. Does anybody think that ordinary venezuelan women identify with the emblematic Chavista females in government ?,, that these represent some kind of ideal of womehood that symbolize all womens vicarious presence in the grand circle of power. That fostorito , or crooked smile Delcy , or the cara de tablas in the CNE or in The TSJ or in various ministries are women they can admire and relate to on an emotional level?? That fancy dressed Cilia is the mother of the Venezuelan people .!! .

    Having women as regime officials doesnt make women atomatically relate to them or like them . Most women are more likely to iike a simpatico male than a dour faced or strindently bellicose female!!

    None of the women in the regime have an independent following of women , they are just part of a bunch which purport to inmmitate the dear departed one and speak in his name . We make too much of the sex of the candidates unless such candidates (if female) have the wherewithal l to attract the simpathy and respect of both men and women in their constituency.

  26. Juan Cristobal, you might want to notice this:
    in regions where we have the majority or are about to have the majority there are more women (4%>) than men of voting age.

    What we cannot do is put a woman there because she is the wife of…as in Maracaibo, San Cristobal and now San Diego.
    We definitely need more women, particularly those with different university studies (not just law or economy)

  27. With so many of the oppo candidates picked from the old guard of the parties, without any dissent allowed, that’s not surprising. This is a description of the consequence, not the cause. How a woman, hell, how any local leadership is going to raise when all the power is guarded jealously by political dinasaurs? I mean, the MUD loves to bash the “radicals” for not being with the “Pueblo Mesmo”….but they go and put Ramos Allup as a candidate. Christ.

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