The Big Tease

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This is the thumb I'm holding you under
This is the thumb I’m holding you under

In 2010, Venezuelans voted to elect a new parliament, the National Assembly. The date of the election was September 26, 2010. The Electoral Council (the CNE) announced the date on November 4, 2009, ten months in advance.

In 2012, we voted again, this time for President. The date of the vote was October 7, 2012. The CNE announced the date on September 14, 2011, more than a year in advance.

Later that same year, we voted for governors and mayors. The date of the vote was December 16, 2012. The CNE announced the date on September 20, 2011, much more than a year in advance.

And yet, here we are, May of 2015. This is the year we are supposed to vote for parliament, the year the opposition will supposedly win, and win big.

And yet the CNE … has yet to announce a date for the vote. “Two weeks,” they told us more than three weeks ago.

The chavista ladies of the CNE have been hinting, winking, and flirting with us. They assure us that the vote will take place no matter what. They are probably sitting in their plush offices, looking at us from their fancy handrail, delighted while we writhe in pain.

All polls are showing the government losing big, which prompted Quico to predict there wouldn’t be an election after all.

The chavista strategy seems clear: postpone the vote as long as they can, indefinitely if need be. Throw every trick in the book at us to discourage us from voting. Make sure we know the CNE is sold, and sold at a bargain.

Personally, I believe the date will be announced soon. I just don’t see them postponing the vote indefinitely, and I think chavismo will lose the election, after which the National Assembly will be stripped of all its powers and be given a ceremonial role, if any.

There could be a Constitutional Assembly. There could be some sort of national emergency declared. Any and all acts coming from an opposition-controlled National Assembly will be deemed illegal. They will find a way to disenfranchise us. I’m sure they will think of something.

In the meantime, the CNE will continue playing their flirtatious little games on us, stringing us into believing we’re still a democracy.

1 COMMENT

  1. “The chavista ladies of the CNE have been hinting, winking, and flirting with us. ”

    I am sure they are being sincere for the first time…hehe

  2. The way the cronograma pans out, to handle all the different processes (accepting postulaciones for primaries, holding primaries, declaring primary winners, accepting postulaciones for the election, designing ballots, etc. etc.) you need no less than 7 months from the moment your announce the date to the date of the election.

    It’s May already. There’s still no date.

    They’ve probably missed the window of opportunity for a 2015 election already.

    • Las van a anunciar en el último minuto, quizás despues de las primarias de la MUD, y junto con “recordar” que sólo candidatos electos por las bases son válidos. Y de pronto han vuelto a ganar el 70% de la asamblea.
      Sorry for writing in spanish, but I could not put that very well in english.

  3. Si hay bahtante democrasia, y eso podere que llaman, parapeto, leyes y ejecutante funsionan fino. Toiticos a votal pol la rebolusion y contra el imperio con las maquinitas Chavezmatic!

  4. “I think chavismo will lose the election, after which the National Assembly will be stripped of all its powers and be given a ceremonial role, if any.”

    How would chavismo go about stripping the National Assembly of its power?

    • Isn’t obvious by now that there is no plan other than to stay in power. These morons could not plan a mess this bad, no one could. Only complete incompetents acting like drunken sailors going from pillar to post taking this country backward into destruction. These guys cannot even maintain electrical plants , or production facilities of any kind and are mental midgets when it comes to international finance. IE “THEY JUST DON”T GET IT” because of their arrogance they think they are smarter than everyone else when their greed is only surpassed by their ignorance. They are just making this up as they go along which is why it is such a disaster for the country,. Raising the wages 30% when they have run away inflation already is a short term (really short term) bandaid for the people. However when arepas cost 26 Bs (whatever that is) to make and 19 Bs. is the selling price, well it takes only a moron to think that can continue. Like I said – burros. The only orders right now to the CNE is to not announce the election while the brain trust in Miraflores “thinks” about it. They will come up with some ridiculous story when they do announce the election and smile at each other and pat each other on the back about how smart they were in pulling the wool over the eye of the electorate once again and don’t realize that the only reason the populace does not say the emperor has no clothes is because they know that will get you arrested and thrown in prison if they say the moron is naked. The is rule by intimidation and some day when the people have truly had enough, will the bloodshed start and we will see a new leader. Probably no change in policy or corruption etc just a change to another moronic leader who will now determine it is his (or her) “TURN” to gorge themselves at the public trough.

  5. “Personally, I believe the date will be announced soon. I just don’t see them postponing the vote indefinitely, and I think chavismo will lose the election…”

    They can’t afford losing this election. That would open the door to a recall referendum against Maduro. No way they are gonna let that happen.

    I think there will be elections, and they will do whatever it takes to win. Things like dividing the opposition, another Dakazo-like event, and of course, electoral fraud (although they will try to minimize the need of it).

    Postponing the announcement of the date of the elections is also part of the plan to win…

    • Assuming there are elections, and that’s a big if, the regime is waiting for the perfect trifecta: a rise in the global price of oil (for the needed slush fund), the implementation of their nationalization plans for all foodstuff (y de ñapa: una arepa gratis), the announcement of parliamentary elections. This will ensure conditions for a short-term piñata, a programmed small loss in the National Assembly, before the curtains come down once again, this time, a shade darker.

      — Mme Claire Voyant

        • That obviously goes without saying, given fingerprinting machines, cédula checks, and earlier, la lista Tascón.

      • Syd, I agree with you in everything you said, except that I don’t think they need to wait for a raise in the price of oil. All they need to do is save (get) all the money they can now (if that means no imports at all for a while, so be it), and expend it all three months prior to the elections, making sure all the previous calamities are clearly blamed on the “defeated” economic war.

        • That would mean actually saving money instead of spending faster than it comes in. I think they are institutionally incapable of that.

    • “They can’t afford losing this election. That would open the door to a recall referendum against Maduro. No way they are gonna let that happen”

      Wait, but … not if the TSJ decides anything the AN does is invalid!

      • My point is not so much that by the actions of a newly elected assembly a recall referendum will be possible. In fact, if I remember correctly, in the last recall referendum against Chavez, chavism controled the assembly, so you don’t need the assembly for that.

        My point is that a loss in this year elections, and especially a big one, would make it clear that the government has no support (if it is not clear enough), and make harder any effort to block the recall.

  6. “I think chavismo will lose the election, after which the National Assembly will be stripped of all its powers and be given a ceremonial role, if any.”

    If they are not beyond retarded, sure, they will FIX the election to make it look as they lost, but only by small margin.. not with 80% en contra.. Then they play with the seats.. who cares. These “elections” do not matter. The Big Fraud will be on the Presidential ones, when they’ll use Chavez’s Fraudmatic machines in full force.

    The Asamblea Nazional is already a fake, a joke. Something most of our incredibly uneducated and naive populace still haven’t figured out. It’s a freaking dictatorship. Whatever Diablodado and a few Military say, period. Maybe in 15 years some people will begin to wake up.. “Powers”? The only powers they have are the Grand Theft Powers.

    • “The Asamblea Nazional is already a fake, a joke. (…) It’s a freaking dictatorship. ”

      Correct, but an opposition majority in the Asamblea would still make a lot of noise and create all sorts of trouble for the executive, they could even claim that the Asamblea Nazional is a joke for all their electorate to hear. It would already be harming to Maduro. They stripped MCM of her post for a reason, right?

  7. Might I reference you to what Gustavo Coronel posted on this subject:

    “• Nationwide, in 2010 the PSUV outperformed the MUD by only 1% (48% to 47%), however it managed 49% more deputies (97-65) to the AN
    • At the local level, the results are even more absurd, reaching the end of Anzoategui where MUD exceeded the vote tally 52% to 45% ,, but the PSUV gets 7 out of 8 elected in that state.”

    An excellent read. http://www.lasarmasdecoronel.blogspot.com/2015/05/mis-diferencias-con-la-mud-en-materia.html

  8. “The people who cast the votes don’t decide an election, the people who count the votes do.” Joseph Stalin

    With that said, I don’t understand why they would want to get rid of the elections. I mean, imagine the juicy headlines around the world if they really do that: “Amid low popularity rates and multiple scandals, Chavismo decides to postpone elections indefinitely”… Jesus! Even the most shameless Chavista intellectual/celebrity will no longer have the guts to sustain that there’s still some sort of democracy in Venezuela. If they go that far, I expect tons of declarations similar to the one uttered by Saramago on Castro in 2003, the iconic words: “This is as far as I go. From now on Cuba will go its way, but I’ll stay.”

    If I were Maduro, I would obviously announce the elections and do it like Putin (98% of the votes in The Chechen Republic) followed by a “So what? Any problem with that? Prove it or be arrested for plotting!” Then pay the Carter Center or another corrupt NGO alike to ‘audit’ everything and then say that the Venezuelan elections are the “cleanest in the world”. And that’s it. Problem solved. Or maybe let some oppositionists win to save face and arrest them some months later blaming “corruption charges”. Problem solved again.

    Or are the Chavistas so confident about their Reich lasting for 1000 years that they don’t even want to pretend anymore that there’s still some trait of democracy left in Venezuela? Will they opt for the Hermit Kingdom route and just show the middle finger for the international community for once and for all? Wow!

    • You forget the general strategy,, postpone everything: al pueblo hay que ir metiendoselo poco a poco, pa’ que no se de cuenta. It’s been proven: if you put a frog in a hot water pan, it jumps out. But if you slowly heat up the water, get a lid y queda sabroso.

    • Totally agree.

      I still don’t understand why F. Toro thinks that postponing the elections indefinitely is a better option.

      • That’s because Mr. Toro believes that for some reason the depraved Chavistas that make business with Hezbollah and Las Farc would be pious when counting the votes, thus they could possibly ‘lose’ if they don’t postpone elections. It’s a cute theory, nonetheless.

        • And he seems to believe that committing clear fraud will be intolerable for the international community (or anyone that cares) while not having elections at all would be somewhat more tolerable. How the hell he comes to this conclusion is beyond me.

  9. I was reading Aporrea today and they do write about losing the election, even though they frame it as an improbable outcome. The interesting thing is that when they explore the option, then they go into full communist-mesianic apologetic mode:

    Zulika King:
    “Los trabajadores esperan ser tomados en cuenta, más allá de los votos, para dirigir el proceso de construcción del socialismo, y no ser desestimados alegremente en sus capacidades, potencialidades, convicciones y conciencia revolucionaria.”

    http://www.aporrea.org/actualidad/a207118.html:

    Or Juan Martorano:

    “Luego de esto, termino estas líneas, transcribiendo como debe ser nuestro parlamento, tomando este fragmento que escribió Lenin, en el Estado y la Revolución: “La salida del parlamentarismo no está, como es natural, en abolir las instituciones representativas y la elegibilidad, sino en transformar dichas instituciones de jaulas de cotorras en corporaciones “de trabajo”. “La Comuna no había de ser un organismo parlamentario, sino una corporación de trabajo, ejecutiva y legislativa al mismo tiempo”(Subrayado del articulista)”

    http://www.aporrea.org/ideologia/a207110.html

    These guys, as Aveledo said sometime earlier, have their religion misplace in communist ideology, Giordani made it clear last year that this is their historic opportunity to bring the workers paradise to Venezuela.

    These guys are either fundamentalists or opportunists. They will do EVERYTHING possible to stay power. Being an optimist, I don’t think they will succeed once hyperinflation sets in and they start losing elections. History does not favor such governments.

    • Of course they will “lose” those laughable “elections”. But by small margin.. ..The Nazional Ass.. means nothing anyway.

  10. I still think it is impossible to govern against your own electoral base. If the poor, that group of people who has held the political fate of the country only to spoil it, finally start thinking about their own life instead of destroying the middle classes and turn on Maduro during this election… well the regime is gone, just as the IV was gone when the poor decided to vote Chavez.

    If that happens, no amount of politicking will save the regime.

      • Then renacuajo, you should travel more.

        In none of those country has the majority turned on the regime.

        No need to go to Pyongyang, just go to London and hang out with the Iranians or the Zimbabweans, you will find out the poor in those countries support their dictators.

        In N Korea there is of course no electoral base.

          • Violently thrown out in the Streets, with support from other countries. Seems like we don’t have the guts.

            “Elections” are always fixed and rigged in dictatorships, especially with Chavezmatic now.

        • Alejandro,

          ZImbabwe had terrible inflation a few years ago. The people starved, yet Mugabe is still in power. In Iran the few times the mullahs allowed a ‘progressive’ candidate in the election, they win in spite of the basiji.

          And perhaps the government does not need militant support, just a level of passiveness as we see in Cuba, and this achievement would be the tipping point for Venezuela.

          • Yeah, yeah, but also Mugabe has played the populist card very well. So many see him as we saw Bolivar.

            That is the thing with liberators. They own the countries they liberate.

            In Iran, sure, the elite is bored of ayatollahs (those are the ones you meet in congresses or universities), but the “people”, the religious people are with them and believe the regime’s propaganda. The difference between moderates and radicals in Iran is something we imagine more than a real policy distinction.

            The poor in Venezuela have very much loved the regime and their destruction of what they saw as the elite.

            There is now a new elite, but because these new people are vulgar and uneducated they don’t really come out as elitist.

            But that may change… The people may start hating these guys who have taken the food, the medicine and so on.

            Even cows stampede, if you mess with them for long enough.

        • The majority of the country in Iran does not support the regime. However, the regime does retain significant popular support and has complete control of the military.

          It’s hard to compare countries, but to summarize the government of Iran is not near as corrupt, idiotic, and surreal as the Chavista one.

          • I am telling you, the Iranian countryside supports the government.

            But you are right. Chavista idiocy is world’s No 1 by a mile.

  11. Watch it, Juan !!! … If you go further than anouncing fraude in the coming election and predict the Assembly will be stripped of all power, you are playing the chavista strategy of discouraging voting.

  12. Would it be “legal” (as in not explicitly disallowed) for them to give Maduro a 5 year Enabling Law right on the last day of this congress?

    • Maduro and his cohorts are the ones who decide what is or is not “legal”. If Maduro is granted a 5-year Enabling Law, then he will say it was legal. Does that answer your question?

  13. Waiting for the price of oil to continue rising before they announce a date, so they are sure to have the funds to splurge on campaign spending and free givaways. Bastards…

  14. I came across a word that suits Venezuela perfectly.
    Ineptocracy (in-ep-toc’-ra-cy)
    – a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.

  15. IMO the sad part is how we stay on message, discussion whether to vote or not to vote and all the associated angel-hair-splitting discussions.

    This Regime has destroyed the nation, hold on to power though graft and corruption of every one that opposes it, and has nothing to show for over two trillion USD of income on the last three quinquenios, nothing (besides secret bank accounts elsewhere)

    The county has bleed its young and brightest and now has people fighting on the street for basic staples, when available.

    And we continue with this kind of stupid technocratic conversations. It is time to assume el peo, and realize this regime will stay in power until is neutralized by force. The only body/group with enough force to counter the criminals in charge is a massive popular revolt and clear minded leadership.

    Our current leadership seems paralysed and confused as much as we are her on this blog given the mastermind distractions adn good management our occupation masters play.

    Este cuento de las elecciones nos tiene tontos.

    • You’re right, and believing in an election win is utopic, and, even if there were to be a win, to make the win effective for democracy/efficiency is even more utopic. The military has its bozal de arepa, so it will be up to the “people” to decide when enough suffering is enough.

  16. Ay velda! Cuando vienen las elexiones?? La ultima ves me regalaron un pollo completico pero bieeeen resuelto pol votal pol mi comandante!

      • “Un boto pa’l Hijo De Chavez, y un boto pa’ los escojidos de eyos, son botos pa’ mi Comandante Eterno, y tambien balen un poyo dada uno.

  17. One of Chavismo’s strategies will be to disqualify any opposition leader or member who may win an election. This is straight from Iran. MCM has been charged, threatened with jail, and summarily evicted from the NA already. Lopez is in jail and will be until Maduro and the Castros are dead. etc.

    The opposition needs to have candidates ready yesterday in case primaries are cancelled. I can see Chavismo announce a snap vote in two weeks with candidates names due in 24 hours. Chavismo already know its candidates, can block opposition campaigning to two minutes a day, can create a quick and deceptive ballot that favors Chavismo, and can count the votes before the opposition decides who is on the ballot.

    If the election is cancelled you can be certain Maduro will blame it on violence started by the opposition. The world already thinks Maduro is an idiot- he has nothing to lose,

    • What Ronaldo said. Snap election. Disqualification of oppo candidates. Arrests of oppo campaign operatives. “Colectivo” violence against oppo campaign operations. Surge of petro-freebies. Voter “guidance”. “Ghost voting”. Fraudulent scandals against oppo candidates and leaders. Fake “independent” cnadidates to split the oppo vote or even win marginal seats. False-flag “oppo” violence. At the end of the day, the chavernment has a bare majority in the AN, and proclaims total victory.

  18. otra cosa, Chusmi, tu vistej el traje de Tibi? Dicen que tiene un cuello tipo napoleon. Que ej eso?
    Y te fijate en la pepa negra que tiene la mujel en el cuello. Uyy, da miedo.

  19. Ayyy y que bella Cilia la Combatiente!! nuejtra primerisima dama ya tiene su programa en la tele, que mujel tan fina y educaaa, rebolucionaria pue,,, no se la pieldan despuej de la novela!

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