In a move that has surpassed even the most permissive standards of batshit lunacy, the Venezuelan government has published its definitive list of suspects linked to Patriota Cooperante José Pérez Venta’s murder and hacking-up of Liana Hergueta.

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Along with your everyday presidential assassins (María Corina Machado), arsonist coup mongers (Leopoldo López) and paramilitary fascists (Álvaro Uribe), newcomer scapegoats include Democrat U.S. Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Republican presidential hopeful Marco Rubio, and El Nacional owner Miguel Henrique Otero. 80’s soap opera star María Conchita Alonso is also thrown in for good measure.

As with every political scandal that Chavismo fabricates, “the sloppier the better” seems to be the operative phrase. It’s like SEBIN entrusts its 17-year-old intern to come up with this stuff between rounds of playing Angry Birds.

Look, I am deeply uncomfortable with the trivialization of the murder of a Venezuelan woman. But the government is plainly bent on making this unfathomable tragedy into a political affair. And commenting on political affairs it my job. It is beyond shameful that a person’s memory be defiled for the sake of partisan spectacle. I can’t not comment on the political implications of the way Liana’s case has been handled. But we can’t lose sight of the fact that a life has been lost, and loved ones are in pain.

None of these compunctions seem to affect the government. Gone are the days when even mínimal effort was put into faking evidence, like the bogus emails that supposedly proved an opposition-led assassination plot conspiracy last year. (Weird how we never heard about that colossal threat to democracy ever again, isn’t it?)

This time around, connections between alleged suspects are as arbitrary as they are unsubstantiated: just throw a bunch of shit at the wall and see what sticks.

And while slander and incrimination might be a fun way for Chavista propagandists to pass the time in their evil lairs, you have to wonder what the practical, measurable, added value to their agenda is, given the government’s increasingly scarce resources.

Will this translate into votes?

I can’t see how.

One thing’s for sure: what chavismo-sponsored defamation lacks in sophistication, it definitely makes up for in distribution channels. The infographic you see above belongs to Ciudad CCS, an unapologetically propagandist daily financed by the Libertador Municipal Government. It circulates, free of charge, in government-friendly communities. (I tried and failed to find one in15 kiosks throughout Eastern Caracas.)

The person who gave me this clipping, a middle-class opposition voter, was handed the paper while riding public transportation. When he read it, his immediate, incredulous and vocal reaction was “¡¡Qué Bolas!!…all that’s missing here is Kermit the Frog.”

His fellow passenger replied, with visceral conviction, “I hope all these assholes land in jail.”

That this particular passenger’s voting intent could be swayed by such an asinine disinformation campaign, despite his more pressing economic woes, is bad enough, but not surprising. After all, he’s long been bombarded with a relentless hegemonic campaign of brainwashing. But does this one piece of propaganda make a difference on the margin? I just don’t think it will make much difference come election day.

What most disturbs me is how chavismo’s strangle-hold on public opinion has basically obliterated this passenger’s capacity and willingness to judge facts for himself, regardless of political allegiance. How it has destroyed his interest in determining how he will ultimately consume reality.

This legacy of profound disrespect towards the individual is something opposition candidates must understand, if their promises of Change are to actually transcend the immediacy of elections.

1 COMMENT

  1. “But does this one piece of propaganda make a difference on the margin? I just don’t think it will make much difference come election day.”

    It’s the government’s daily reminder to its voters: “Thinking about voting for them because you’re mad at us? Remember they’re evil!” It’s not the first and it certainly won’t be their last. Chavismo hasn’t ever been on the defensive, they always use a powerful offense. That’s why, even while the PSUV is down by 20 points in the polls, the MUD’s ground there is still shaky.

    • I am very disappointed at this article and its analysis. I Imagine having to read pro-government stories does affect one’s on analysis and even writing. I think one should never underestimate this Government, EVER!!! An error that we do over and over again! This ‘fabricated story by the Government, will not directly swing votes but it has the power to create more chaos and re-iterate the message “We the government are indestructible, as we can slander, and threaten (with imprisonment) anybody!” So what can you do voter??? nothing! So are you sure voter (Mr. Rodriguesz/Gonzalez/Miss fernandez) that voting will make a difference?. If we accuse and imprison Leopoldo and Ledezma, imagine what we can do with a ‘layman’ like you Mr. Rodriguez/Mrs Gonzalez/Mrs Fernandez?”!. The effect of this article, hence is to increase abstention and also to radicalise the more radical Chavista, those ready to ‘fight’..who would even believe in Aliens being involved in the conspiracy. To believe that this Government strategy is swinging votes is totally underestimating this Government’s capacity to play out of the democracy game.

      • There are three kinds of intelligence: one kind understands things for itself, the other appreciates what others can understand, the third understands neither for itself nor through others. This first kind is excellent, the second good, and the third kind useless.
        Niccolo Machiavelli

        Their minds belong to the government, can’t think for themselves. They depend on the government for everything. That is the reason for getting rid of private enterprise.

      • Well said, Paola. And that’s why it’s best to follow democratic norms, however twisted they may be in the back rooms. Meaning, one must make an effort to vote, no matter how many nincompoops — even those who pose as oppositionists — throw a ‘pataleta’ and try to convince others that voting is useless.

  2. I never really trusted that Marco Rubio guy…but, seriously, an Oppo rides the Ven. subway only at his peril–he might come into contact with the (ugh!) Pueblo, that is if one of them doesn’t rob/plug him for his celular first.

    • Es que se ahogó con sus propios dientes luego de estrellarse con la verdad irrefutable, de que los sapos descuartizadores son rojos rojitos chaburros chaburritos.

      El hecho de que no pueda convencer a nadie de que el sapo no es chaburro tal vez lo llevó a esto:

      Así que tiene que conseguirse un teclado nuevo, otra vez.

      • Te mando otro tomate, Ralph!

        “Milité en el partido Primero Justicia a partir del año 2012 cuando fueron las primarias donde Henrique Capriles Radonski participó de cara a unas elecciones presidenciales contra el presidente Hugo Chávez. A partir de ahí formé parte de un movimiento llamado Jóvenes Trabajando Aquí (JOTA). En cuanto a que Henrique Capriles no me reconoce como militante de PJ tengo unas fotos con él al igual que con Tomás Guanipa, somos muy buenos amigos, de hecho uno de los hermanos de Guanipa estudió con mi hermano en la universidad del Zulia”, fueron las palabras de Carlos Trejo.

        • Seguimos esperando las pruebas de que los sapo descuartizadores de narcodado no son chaburros.

          Cierto, es que no existen, sólo sabes balbucear paja sin sentido como si con eso fueras a tumbar evidencia dura e irrefutable como la que mostré y que es de conocimiento mundial.

          Pilas, que el asesinato no prescribe, y esos batracios pagarán con 30 años completicos como se lo merecen, en una celda al lado de la de su jefe, el narco mayor de Venezuela.

  3. Peel back the onion one more layer and it’s inevitable that you will found the secret hand of Jim Luers behind all of this…

  4. Lets bear in mind that any news that even for a minute distracts public attention away from the daily disaster of their lives ( clearly blameable on the govts corruption and mismanagement) benefits the regime , people however are not so easily distracted anymore because whats happening in every ones life is so traumatic that it holds their rapt and constant attention , thus the regimes each time more frenzied efforts at creating distracting news so outlandish and nutty that people let go of their main day to day concern with battling shortages , rampant inlfation etc.

    If you go to any public place nowadays , any where , any time , where people meet there is one mandatory topic of irate or cinical discussion ,the crisis in their lives and the govts role in causing it . If you want to talk about an hegemonic all absorving theme , thats it !!

    This explains the lunacy of the regimes latest attempts at creating news that go far beyond the limits of the believable and which following Goebbles well known advise blame the regimes enemies for all the wicked things that happen in the world .

    The deeper the crisis bites into everyone life the grossest the inventions the regime will make to distract people from their daily predicaments .

  5. Obviously, all these individuals who believe in what the regime has to say have serious problems with the use of basic logic… it seems to me millions of Venezuelans suffer from that because of their very faulty upbringing and almost zero education.

    The actual murderers got themselves pictures with Guanipa and Ledezma and others. I am sure there are other infiltrated who did the same…the regime planned of not the murder of this poor woman the general scheme.

    I believe the opposition should for once not just say it is all slander. It should prepare a proper case of all the accusations made by the regime and then organise press conferences aimed at the outside world. It should demand the regime’s actions be discussed abroad and, on the side, demand again international observers.

  6. “What most disturbs me is how chavismo’s strangle-hold on public opinion has basically obliterated this passenger’s capacity and willingness to judge facts for himself, regardless of political allegiance. How it has destroyed his interest in determining how he will ultimately consume reality.”

    1/ Castro-Chavistas know that they only need the support of a certain section of the populace, their ignorant Target Audience suffices for their ignoble purposes of staying in power. 30% reticent support is enough for them, considering all the tools at their disposal: the media, electoral frauds, massive fear & terror tactics, repression, bribes, promises..

    (5 Million direct Chavista enchufados plus other indirect leeches and thieves = 25% support even for Masburrismo already. Plus a little bit of the 60% ignorant Chavista population that they can can bribe, threaten or intimidate. Plus the Gerrumandering, Trampas, Fraudes,, done deal in the fake “parlamento” until the next Fraud in the next Presidential “elections”. )

    2/ Massive lack of Real Education explains it all here, as usual. Pueblo-People actually believe this surreal crap, or “batshit lunacy” as you well say, only because they are completely incapable of thinking for themselves, no analytical skills, no basic, elementary information about world history, basic politics or economics, no individual reasoning ability whatsoever. You learn that in school, and I don’t mean just Chavista alphabrutization school.

    That’s why they distribute those free flyers and cheap papers in certain areas only. They couldn’t care less about the rest and have limited resources now. Conocen su ganado: Ignorant target audience suffices: Petare Guatire, Cota 905 or Barlovento, not Caurimare.

    They know only that only such incredibly under-educated pueblo-people can swallow such massive media Turds. That’s all they really need besides bribes, corruption, force and repression.

    That’s what many of us in the “East” side of the bus sometimes fail to comprehend: We have a hard time wrapping our educated, analytical and exiled brains around such impossible, massive ignorance, so we might still feel puzzled or perplexed by such daily, yet widely accepted barbarities.

  7. “And while slander and incrimination might be a fun way for Chavista propagandists to pass the time in their evil lairs, you have to wonder what the practical, measurable, added value to their agenda is, given the government’s increasingly scarce resources.

    Will this translate into votes?

    I can’t see how.”

    The point is, not to lose their voting base, appealing to the hatred seeded by the mortadela podrida and the commies since the 60s, AND keep the ninís thinking that “the oppos are a shit, so they prefer the ‘known evil’ over the ‘one to be known'”

    But mostly to keep the idiots at their own base from going backstabbey.

    • Any choro after the first couple of strikes jumps straight to upper class strata, just by having a couple of hundreds of millions in his “account”.

      The whole “people hate middle/upper class” shit is just a hate-speech to find some scapegoat.

  8. Im not sure that even most hard core chavistas pay that much attention to this kind of govt misinformation , even if they tend after years of indoctrination to believe it , there are now more pressing things occupying their minds , like finding the stapples they need to feed themselves and attend to their living needs, like finding the money to make ends meet , finding the stuff you need is a constant battle that consume so much of their energies and atttention that there is little left to spend on worrying about those so often repeated govt tales of obscure conspiracies and plots .

      • Ralph, never heard of Rosie Palms or her ‘message’ but I guess you may be right that for the Chavista mind the propaganda induced hatred of enemies might bring on a mental pleasure similar to that which some find in the practice of masturbation . hatred (righteous outrage) can indeed serve as a kind of morbid stimulant to the grossest most obscene passions !! , Even then, constant anxiety and fatigue caused by the constant struggle to find (and pay for) the basic stapples of life can dampen in many the inclination for indulging in morbid pleasures .

  9. The next logical step is to put out an “album de barajitas” that will paint the entire conspiracy out.

    There’s still more people to rope in to this.

  10. I think all the American politicians named should file a slander law suit, just like Diosdado Cabello did against all the newspapers that reported (truthfully) the U.S. accusations against him for involvement in drug trafficking.

  11. I’d like to see a couple of different polls:

    – “Would you still vote for Chavez or another Chavista candidate like he was?”

    – “Who do you think is to blame for the Economy, escasez, inflacion, colas?

    1/ Chavismo system
    2/ Maduro Government
    3/ Ultra-derecha, Miami-Bogota-Madrid axis of Evil
    4/ Do you believe in Economic or Political wars from other countries against Venezuela?

    You know what the pathetic, astonishingly ignorant results would be.
    Probably over 60% for Chavismo and blaming Colombia, USA or Ultra-derecha for everything.

    That’s how bright and well educated the Venezuelan populace is. The reason for all this shit.

  12. Accordidng to polls taken in May of 2015 , 16% say there are no significant food shortages, of the rest who do think there are shortages (84%) , there are only 2.4% blaming the oppo/the US govt private business interests for the shortages.

    Right now Chavistas are reduced to about 25% of the population , from the above it appears that 16% of people are fanatized enought that they are in denial that there are any significant shortages , and of the rest 2.4% blame the Unholly Alliance of Regime enemies , meaning that there are quite a few hard core chavistas who believe the govt is to blame for the shortages .

    The subject of inflation is not dealt with in the post .

    Wonder what a poll taken now ( when things have worsened considerably) would reveal.

  13. Commenters keep mentioning the “..uneducated people of Vzla…” or “…almost zero education” of the population but, isn’t one of the greatest quoted achievements of the Chavez government to have nearly eliminated analfabetism? Is this true? Analfabetism at what level?

    Assuming that this claim is true, “learning to read” is certainly one of the most important steps in bringing about education. However, analfabetism is not a single, unique measure. Instead, there are a number of categories to judge the degree of analfabetism, the reading skills required to read food labels (for example) or the reading skills required to read a simple, short story. Perhaps the validity and relevance of the claim to have eliminated analfabetism should be questioned?

    • there are two kinds of iliteracy , one which prevents you from reading a text , and another which prevents you from reasoning and thinking at an analytical and critical level . The latter we might call intellectual literacy , and it has nothing to do with natural intelligenve but with peoples ability to use it to understand and judge complex issues with any degree of competence. There are people who are literate in the first sense but iliterates in the second sense . There are also people who are notional intelectual literates but who are functionally intellectual illiterates becaue even if they have recieved some formal education they never learned to think for themselves in any analytical and critical way.

      • Good afternoon, last time I checked Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen was a Republican. Also, the way the writer described María Conchita-Alonso is quite disappointing. The actress made it in Hollywood many years ago and is to many more than a mere ’80’s soap star’. In the bigger scheme of things, these two facts may not be important to the overall argument of the piece, yet when the writer begins his article with inaccurate information, it deters me from reading the rest. Just a thought.

    • isn’t one of the greatest quoted achievements of the Chavez government to have nearly eliminated analfabetism? Is this true? Analfabetism at what level?

      While Chavismo and its PSF supporters have made the claim, the claim is bogus. Years ago, when Chavismo was claiming that UNESCO had commended Venezuela for eliminating illiteracy, Alek Boyd contacted UNESCO to find out if it had made such a statement. UNESCO informed Alek that it had not made such a statement. [VCrisis archives] From the abstract of Francisco Rodríguez’s 2006 study: Freed From Illiteracy? [2006] :

      We evaluate the success of the Venezuelan government’s latest nation-wide literacy program, Misión Robinson, using official Venezuelan government survey data. Controlling for existing trends in literacy rates by age groups over the period 1975 to 2005, we find at most a small positive effect of Robinson on literacy rates, and in many specifications the program impact is statistically indistinguishable from zero. This main result is robust to time series analysis by birth cohort, and to state-level difference-in-differences estimation. The results appear to be inconsistent with recent official claims of the complete eradication of illiteracy in Venezuela, but resonate with existing research on other adult literacy programs, which have usually been expensive failures

      Enrollment in higher education institutions has increased, as has Chavista indoctrination in same. According to the 2011 census, 4.92% of the population 10 years and older is illiterate.

      http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2012/12/13/venezuela-lies-damned-lies-and-statistics#ref2

      http://www.redatam.ine.gob.ve/Censo2011/index.html

      .

      • Even if the alphabetization campaign had been a total success and had rid Venezuela from illiteracy , being able to read by itself means nothing if the people thus aphabetized use their recently acquired skill not at all or only to read garbage and little if at all to read things capable of improving their minds, their critical thinking skills . Its well known that most people in Venezuela are averse to reading anything beyond the sports news and the yellow pages and maybe the 5 y 6 forecast of favourite horses . For news and other heavier fare they rely either on the radio or TV or just plain conversation with kin, friends or neighbors. Thats why the regime has been so slow in attacking the independent papers because for them the priority was filling the airwaves with their own radio and tv stations and silencing those that might be critical of their performance. !!

  14. Emiliana – you need to read the news and not be so selective. All the military officers involved in the plot to bomb Caracas are in jail. Look it up if you can be bothered. Ledezma is still in jail. Borges is in the process of having his parloamentary immunity taken away. Sttrange that these things happened and you willfully and lyingly ignore them and write that we have Heard nothing more about this plot.

    Regarding throwing shit at the Wall and making it stick. If you do not want to believe the videos testimonies of Perez Venta and Trejo that is you problema – and it is more than that since it is a clear sign that you support parmilitary crimes against Venezuelans by denying the connections between the opposition you support and their terrorist financiers.

    You are the one who shopuld be ashamed.

  15. “This legacy of profound disrespect towards the individual is something opposition candidates must understand”…………………………that’s rich cpming from you, you bare-faced hypocrite.

    Remember the profound disrespect you showed to Chavez’ family when he was mortally ill? But thatps OK I suppose.

    • A question for you, Mr. Rosales:

      When one talks of profound disrespect, how did you feel regarding what you, as a member of chavismo, were told repeatedly during the last year of President Chavez’s life regarding his illness. Specifically, how you were told repeatedly that he was getting better and how he was not dying? Through all those cadenas wherein he and his people repeatedly said he would be fine?

      Did you feel lied to? Did you feel profound disrespect on the part of your leadership that you could not be trusted to handle the truth?

        • So you refuse to answer an honest question?

          This has nothing to do with any double standard. I am curious about how you feel about the leadership lying to its base.

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