Acting bruto and being bruto

Your daily briefing for Wednesday, May 18th, 2016. Translated by Javier Liendo.

This Tuesday, Café Madrid completely shut down production due to lack of raw materials. Protests in Guarenas (Miranda state) stirred memories of the Caracazo in many, evoking the spearheading role then played by that city. The Armed Forces launched their own campaign on social media, using a very strange hashtag to post pictures of the weapons it controls. In a country without food or medicine, weapons abound. The PSUV reiterated their stand of preventing any opposition marches from reaching downtown Caracas and Nicolás did a cadena that was as, like his rule, long and useless.

The context of freedom

Nicolás is annoyed by freedom of information and press. Anything that challenges official propaganda becomes a “systematic, political and media attack,” against him, his government and the nation. That’s why he insisted on winning peace through the battle for truth. He has a soft spot for that oxymoron. He admitted that, when the empire wants to impose something, they act brutos. He confused epicenters with axes, scenarios of violence to justify a foreign military intervention and a concerted campaign like the one in 2002. He still dreams with his coup d’état, while also saying that, if he were to campaign in Spain, he’d sweep the election. But the challenge is here, not there.

Since Venezuela is a key element for the continent’s stability – in his humble opinion – he called for world solidarity, saying that nobody’s surrendering here -yes, again- and that the Constitution will prevail. You know, the one he’s blithely violating with the support of the Armed Forces, who supposedly detected, on May 11 and 13, an illegal trespass of a North-American spy plane -Boeing 707E3 Sentry-, with lethal technical capabilities. These incursions “will be strongly condemned before the United States government.”

Not a single dollar

Nicolás didn’t give any figures. He didn’t speak about oil production, about the deficit, inflation or GDP, but he dared to say that thousands of medical doctors “are giving away medicines door to door.” According to him, the order in the banking halls of the world is not to send a single dollar to Venezuela and that’s only a part of the plan to choke him internationally. He admitted that he won’t overcome the “economic war” for now, and also said that he’ll end imports, as if he wasn’t sacrificing them to pay debts that don’t increase his government’s reliability, exactly because they violate their own laws. Saying that sabotage is to blame for everything that fails in the country is an insult that he’s now willing to use as a justification for a default. The constant sensitivity to other people’s actions -to dejarse joder, in technical terms-, makes him an incompetent and he doesn’t have a problem repeating it.

Elections postponed

And so, he reached the most important point: saying that “they” (The Executive Branch?, PSUV?, CNE?) aren’t compelled to organize a referendum at all; that the National Assembly lost political validity once the PSUV lost control of it, and that it will soon disappear; that opposition marches are insurrectional events and must remain in the ghetto of the Caracas’ east side, and that only presidential and legislative elections can’t be postponed. Although he said that “the entire country will say no to the referendum being set against it.” He’s unwilling to put his words to the test, to lose as he’s always done.

This was a cadena to convince us that we’ll have to force them to make the elections, as well as handing over power, because then he added: “If they were successful and ousted the revolution, we’d never, never, never give in,” that’s the concept of democracy for the becerro who acts bruto.

In the National Assembly

The deputies of the Democratic Unity Roundtable explained how Nicolás’s decree breaks the constitutional order, damages the democratic order and represents a coup d’état against public institutions, the Constitution and the people. So, they pre-approved an Agreement that condemns both the State of Exception and the Economic Emergency, and nullified the decrees, with the PSUV caucus abstaining from voting. They were headed by Pedro Carreño, who suffered the argumentative setback of Henry Ramos Allup’s oratory, focused on the nonsense of militarisation and the stupidity of presenting it as something “natural.”

The Agreement nullifies the decree; denounces that it deepens the severe alteration of the democratic order and neglect for the Constitution; invites the UN, the OAS, Mercosur and Unasur to help check the dismantling of the Republic and the Constitution, promoting measures that lead to a true restitution of Venezuelans’ rights. En fin.

Refusing the decree

Henrique Capriles Radonski called for public condemnation of the decree because it’s null and unconstitutional: “If Maduro wants to apply this decree, let him prepare the tanks and the planes because he’ll have to impose it by force and we Venezuelans will have to resist through non-violence.” He cautioned the Armed Forces that they must choose whether to stand with the people or with Nicolás. He said that the government can’t prevent this Wednesday’s march because there are constitutional guarantees that aren’t suspended yet: “the freedom of transit, political rights, all rights established in the Constitution remain in force”. He alerted Maduro that the more radical he becomes, the faster he’ll leave the presidency; that blocking a peaceful, democratic, constitutional and electoral regime change can only spark a social uprising.
Everyday devaluation accelerated. This Tuesday, Simadi closed at Bs. 426.52 per dollar. Enduring the bolívar’s exceedingly reduced purchase power, as beaten as freedom, in the midst of terrible scarcity, is causing many to go wild. I celebrate that Capriles is setting a posture before the decree, but I know that military incentives haven’t been linked with the law for years. I’m still indecisive as to whether I want to smell tear gas, let me check my stash of vinegar and toothpaste. Let me check on my friends still living in Venezuela, to see who on earth is going.

Naky Soto

Naky gets called Naibet at home and at the bank. She coordinates training programs for an NGO. She collects moments and turns them into words. She has more stories than freckles.