MedioMalo Presidente

This 2008 propaganda clip is an amazing historical document. It's worth watching. And re-watching. And re-watching.

There are many good reasons to post and repost this 2008 propaganda spot, where the government mocks “EvilMedia” for its doom and gloom over the “bolivar fuerte”. MedioMalo, it turns out, deja a Nostradamus pendejo:

Your life will be hard, everything will get more expensive, inflation, devaluation of the currency, there’ll be shortages, capital flight, you’ll go hungry, this dictatorship, there’ll be misery!

As a facebook friend put it, “chamo, we have to ask MedioMalo for some lotto numbers…”

But, as I think about it, what I love the most about this clip is that it’s just, oddly, laterally…wrong.

Nobody ever said that taking three zeroes off of the currency would have any of these consequences. Nobody sane, anyway, because that’s an economic non-sequitur.

Our point was always that unless you brought some minimal rationality to economic policy-making, got spending under control, gave the Central Bank its independence back and stopped printing up the money to cover your deficits, you’d eventually end up with macroeconomic chaos.

The “reconversión monetaria” didn’t actually do anything to address the structural problems that threatened the bolivar’s stability. Our point was that selling the bolivar fuerte as a mechanism to “stabilize the currency” was misleading and wrong: only fiscal and BCV reform could do that, not twiddling with the zeroes at the end of the bills.

Apparently, nobody at SiBCI understood the criticisms well enough to grasp that kind of nuance. From their point of view, the opposition media was just a random doom-and-gloom generator, a kind of downer bot. It’s hardly a surprise that our exact reasoning got subtly garbled in the propaganda backlash: that’s what happens when you mock what you don’t understand.

Still, though: MedioMalo. That guy knew what was what.