So, last Thursday I decided to get my Carnet de la Patria, ok I didn’t decide it, it was more like peer pressure. You see, the night before, Pinino, the “communal leader” that always organizes CLAP day in our building, was going through every apartment with his clipboard. He was making a list of every person that wanted to get a Carnet de la Patria, the new ID card Maduro just invented.

Pinino is cool, he is not chavista, just someone who is very active in the community, he helped us get the CLAP IDs when Maduro invented those, and he was reserving a day for us during the the Carnet de la Patria drive being held at a nearby school, for all the people in my building. He asked me if I wanted to sing up, pen and clipboard in hand, I didn’t want to leave him hanging, so I gave him my name and ID number. How bad can it be anyway? If they are going one building at a time, it’ll be fast and organized, and It’ll be only us, the neighbors.

Pinino told me I should be there at 6:00 am, but I got up at 6:30. My mom wasn’t home, she was already in line. At about 6:40 my mom calls me, “they are going through the list, where are you? Don’t worry about breakfast, this will be fast!”.

So, I get dressed as fast as I can and I rush out the door. I can see a small line in front of the school, about 15 persons, a totally endurable line, but my mom told me over the phone that our line was the one around the corner, at the side-entrance of the school. Probably an even-shorter VIP line, I think, after all I was in Pinino’s list made.

Oh, Carlos-from-last-week, why are you always so naïve?

The most outrageous part is that no one really knew exactly what the Carnet de la Patria is for.

There are probably around 200 people crowded around the entrance, but I can make out at least 3 different lines. There’s a line for the elderly and disabled, that’s the longest, another for the non-disabled, and another for my neighbors. After a while, they split the line of the neighbors in two, one for the elderly and disabled neighbors, and one for the non-elderly and disabled neighbors. My mom goes into the elderly one and gives me her spot, she is with my best friend’s mom and Julio’s wife (remember Julio? I wrote about him). I am fifth in line, I think.

It’s 8AM they haven’t opened the gates, people start complaining. The lady that sells corn and cachapas, complains about missing a day of work. She has a daughter, in third grade or something, in Fe y Alegría, that always helps her sell her food.

The man that lives on the ground-floor level of my building says the same thing. Have you seen one of those pictures of Venezuelans waiting in line and looking miserable? Imagine if you knew every face in the frame, it’s even more depressing.

About an hour later they let everyone in, the elderly and the elderly-neighbor lines are shuffled to a hallway inside the school. They put the rest of us below a mango-tree in the school’s green area. Pinino tells us they are going to call on the elderly first and then us, and we just need to be patient.

That’s a good chance to bond with my neighbors, people I’ve seen all my life but never talked to. The only problem is that everyone has better things to do, and don’t want to waste their day hanging out under a freaking mango tree.

The most outrageous part is that no one really knew exactly what the Carnet de la Patria is for.

Everyone keps telling me they are getting it just in case. “You’re gonna need to start showing the Carnet for everything: opening bank accounts, paying bills… just imagine this is your new ID” That’s what Jenny tells me. She is the daughter of Julio.

“It’s for the Clap bags” A girl that lives in the second floor tells me.

“You’ll need it to get benefits from the government, cellphones, home appliances, everything” The man behind me adds.

One chamo, who is just about to start collage, tells me he is getting it just in case they ask him for it when getting his passport. He is thinking of leaving the country, can you blame him?

Manuel (I’ve mentioned him before too), tells me he will just use the Carnet if he loses his ID.

My phone battery dies, so I lose track of time, but at around 11AM I go to see my mom in the priority elderly lines. I want to give her some bread Jenny shared with me. There is a lot of screaming, everyone, including my mom, is complaining that they have things to do, that they’ve been there since 4AM. For a moment, I just stay there with my piece of bread, the sight of my mom, complaining about her right to get the Carnet de la Patria stuns me, she hasn’t had her breakfast yet, just like me, and doesn’t really know what the Carnet was for either.

Nobody does.

I just stay there with my piece of bread, the sight of my mom, complaining about her right to get the Carnet de la Patria stuns me.

My mom tells me the line hasn’t moved an inch, and they are just helping people coming from the other entrance (remember the totally endurable 15-people line I saw on my way to the school). My mom gives up and goes home, Dilia (Julio’s wife) had already left at that point.

At about noon, a lady approaches the mango tree and takes some of us to a classroom, where we will be also made to wait, but in a more comfortable setting. They finished helping the people that were left over from yesterday and will start with us.

I sit in a child’s desk, a pupitre, I expect it to be a tight fit, but I can get in just fine. The old lady in front of me isn’t as comfortable, she is too big for her pupitre. There is no air-conditioning, just some slow-moving ceiling fans, so everyone is starting to sweat. I ask the old lady why is she getting the Carnet de la Patria for. She tells me that she needs some hard-to-find medicines, and heard that the consejos comunales will start selling them, but only to the people that have the ID.

The classroom is just another line. Every once in a while, someone comes to take the people of the first row of pupitres with him, and a new batch of people come from the mango trees.

A lady needs some hard-to-find medicines, and heard that the consejos comunales will start selling them, but only to the people that have the ID.

Some take the opportunity to have their lunch in the classroom. I don’t have a phone to call someone to bring me food, and I can’t leave to my apartment literally across the street to eat. I could lose my spot. I try to avoid looking at other people’s food so I don’t get hungry. It doesn’t work.

At about 3 pm I am finally in the first row of pupitres, and they call me. They take us to another classroom; it is another line. This one is even more crowded and I am sitting on the floor. For two hours the line doesn’t move, no one is coming to call on the people in the first row of pupitres. An old man enters the classroom selling ice-cream pops, chupi-chupis. I have a yellow one, my breakfast. I would’ve eaten my lunch, a purple chupi-chupi, but he ran out. He starts talking about religion, and how everything that is happening in Venezuela is happening because people have strayed from the path of God. Some people are nodding along with his speech, “that’s right” someone says.

Everyone is getting restless, complaining about the lack of organization. This is the order: Outside, mango tree, Classroom A, Classroom B, and then Carnet de la Patria, but they are only tending to the ones under the mango tree, that’s why the line isn’t moving.

People demand respect. They don’t complain about the existence of the stupid Carnet de la Patria, nor about the self-coup d’état that is happening at the moment, they complain about the organization of the line.

“We are first, we’ve been waiting since four in the morning, there are people that came at midday, fresquitos, and you help them first. Esto es un abuso!

People don’t complain about the existence of the stupid Carnet de la Patria, they complain about the queue.

Everyone gets back out of classrooms A and B, and form a single line, that way they can be on the look-out for any funny business. Everyone is saying that the leader of the Consejo Comunal and owner of the ID card printer, is letting in her own people.

The people from the mango tree come and formed another line in another hallway. Now there are only two lines, and everyone makes sure they are helping the same number of people of each line. Five and five.

“Why don’t they call on ten at a time? Ten on this side and ten of the other side, that way is faster,” someone says.

I see my mom who is just arriving and add her to the line, just in front of me, when no one is watching. That line goes painfully slow, and people are constantly complaining and offering their own ideas on how to better organize the line. There is a military officer with an assault rifle keeping an eye on everyone, he doesn’t say a thing, he is just there.

At about 6:45PM they finally call on me and my mom. They ask questions about the misiones, do you have a pet? (Misión Nevado), have you ever taken a bus de los rojitos? (Misión Transporte), have you ever been to a CDI? (Misión Barrio Adentro) that sort of thing.

Oh, and they ask for the name of the Consejo Comunal and the name of the CLAP (I have no idea what that is). I practiced those answers in the line about a hundred times, “Consejo comunal: Libertadores de América, Nombre del Clap: Teresa de la Parra”. They also ask if I belong to PSUV.

I get home at about 7PM, it’s already dark outside, and the first thing I do is drink water and charge my phone. That’s when I find out about the TSJ’s rulings and the autogolpe. Not a single person in the line had mentioned it.

In these faraway lands of Puerto Ordáz people are too busy trying to get a piece of plastic that does absolutely nothing, the political scandals are but a distant noise, a win for Maduro if you ask me.

71 COMMENTS

  1. Excellent piece? more like excellent garbage, un columnista de CCSchron sacándose la tarjeta de racionamiento! qué verguenza coño! qué sumisión!… no te excusa que hayas escrito al respecto, ni que lo necesites para CLAP, eres parte del peo, parte de la sumisión y entrega.

        • Hi, I am Christine Thomas and would like to share my experience with you guys on how I got a loan to pay the duty tax of my bank draft and to start up a new business. I was at the verge of loosing all my belongings due to the bank draft I took to offset some bills and some personal needs. I became so desperate and began to seek for funds at all means. Luckily for me I heard a colleague of mine talking about this company, I got interested. Although I was scared of being scammed, I was compelled by my situation and then I began to look online and ran into their email at: anzjacksonfinancingplc@yahoo.com where I was given a loan within 72hrs without knowing what it feels like to be scammed. So I promised myself that I was going to make this known to as many that are in financial stress to contact them and not fall victim of online scam in the name of getting a loan.,;

        • And there’s still a game after 19 years of this sh*t, because there are “players” playing along… not to call them ignorant or opportunistic fools…

          • The players that were supossed to take the lead are sold to the regime, and the ones that could do something about it were either locked up, silenced or straight up murdered.

    • Porque el hecho de que la gente sea obligada a perder su tiempo en filas inútiles día tras día para que no se enteren de las inmundicias que vomita el chavismo mientras siguen siendo exprimidas por hasta el mafioso rojo rojito más bajo no es algo que deba darse a conocer según tu lógica.

      Según tú, aparentemente las cajas mexicanas no las necesitan los “opositores sifrinos” porque ellos en teoría se pueden comprar toda la comida y medicinas a los otros mafiosos rojitos: Los bachaqueros, como si en Venezuela se siguiera produciendo la comida al mismo ritmo de la 4ta y el chavismo no la hubiese monopolizado como un arma de dominación de la sociedad.

      Según tu comentario, el chavismo no acostumbra extorsionar a la sociedad con las cosas más básicas para mantenerlos de rodillas y poder seguir siendo gobierno.

      Parece que tú no ves que lo único que el chavismo podría hacer para ser más evidente que es una banda de narcotraficantes que desde el 92 sólo pensaron en como saquear Venezuela y entregarle los pedazos a las fuerzas de ocupación cubanas sería que le pegaran una pistola en la cabeza a la gente para arrodillarlos…

      Oh, cierto, YA LO HACEN:

  2. I chuckled a couple of times while reading this, I don’t know I should feel ashamed of that; but I think it’s your talent to make even the most miserable stories enjoyable to read. About the matter itself, it’s a good reflection of what goes on in the inner Venezuela, far from the Game of Thrones being played in Caracas; where people’s priorities are getting food, meds and making it back home alive at the end of the night. That’s something hard to understand for foreigners and twitternators who complain about lack of support to public demonstrations, but in the end it’s survival instinct: “I can’t think of saving the patria if I can’t save myself before”, basically the same principle followed by emigrants.

    And Hermy667: GFY!

  3. “They also ask if I belong to PSUV.”
    Wow! That question right there would be unacceptable in a Democracy.

    I guess the purpose of the “Carnet de la Patria” is for the Dictatorship segregate and identify who are against them.

    If I have to do it I would probably lie and say yes to that question as a way to sabotage its purpose.

    • ““They also ask if I belong to PSUV.”
      Wow! That question right there would be unacceptable in a Democracy.”

      One proof among many.

  4. Honestly, people who endure all that to get a card they don’t know the purpose of, deserve to belong to the PSUV. Get a job.

    • This…
      Who the hell forced this guy to stay for 12h for a piece of plastic he himself calls “worthless”? not even journalistic curiosity would excuse this, as the same testimonies could have been collected in a couple of minutes, it’s disgusting and shameful.

      I’m not even criticizing this poor, domesticated soul, i’m sure he has reasons beyond what he exposed in this piece, because otherwise it’s imposible to justify such a waste of time in something you clearly are against. I’m criticizing Caracas Chronicles for publishing this kind of crap, what’s next? i became a patriota cooperante for day and lived to tell you all about it in Caracas Chronicles? actually that would be more insightful than this.

  5. Is there a deadline to get the mysterious “carnet”? Does anyone even know what it’s for? Sounds like a useless segregation tool.

    Fact is many Venezuelans are used to be patronized by the criminal regime, they expect to receive freebies, “the ‘government’ will provide..” “ah pero el gobielno no me ha dado mi vivienda, vale chico, y tampoco me regala mi comia'”

    It’s pathetic. I wouldn’t spend 5 minutes in such lines. Why did you waste an entire day in line, you Carlos Hernandez? Scared to be left out by the regime, or you were hoping for some assistance and freebies from Chavismo??

    Do reply Carlos Hernandez. Why?

    • “Sounds like a useless segregation tool”

      Because it doesn’t LOOK LIKE IT, it IS a segregation tool.

      “Is there a deadline?”

      When maduro decides to pull it off his ass, “cuando le dé la gana a maduro y se lo saque del rabo”

      “Scared to be left out by the regime?”

      The regime pretty much can ask for that shiz tomorrow in order to make any procedure (trámite), such as opening a bank account, or getting any document like the passport (For which they are already discriminating, as they’re forcing people to pay with credit card, owned by natural person)

      ““the ‘government’ will provide..” “ah pero el gobielno no me ha dado mi vivienda, vale chico, y tampoco me regala mi comia’”

      …you were hoping for some assistance and freebies from Chavismo??”

      This always makes me laugh, because truckloads of people have never understood that chavismo basically destroyed everything else to ensure the rise of their monopoly, they’re not “assistance” nor “freebies”, they will soon be the ONLY WAY TO HAVE ACCESS TO THOSE.

    • “He who has not reaped a benefit, direct or indirect, from oil rents, and he who has put his life on the line to change things rather than tout his comfortable circumstances and plain fucking good luck as a virtue…..yeah, you cast the first stone about the people and their *freebies*.”

      – Jesus (sort of)

      • It’s not about “if I took something supossedly subsidized then I’ve lost my right to point the chavista bullshit” thing, that’s another fallacy.

        It’s not about “I want free stuff”

        It’s about “chavismo destroyed EVERY OTHER OPTION SO I AM FORCED NOW TO BE EXPLOITED BY THEIR MONOPLY”

      • Canucklehead blame the victim, much? There are no freebies in Vz except for the thieves. The people were forced to exchange their wealth, their bodies, their productive lives for dependence at a huge discount. When the monopolistic government forces one to receive a benefit, the person has clean hands. Sadly the benefits came at a terrible price.

        Leftism plays on psychology by first creating the dependency of the people then enforcing your idea that nobody then has a legitimate complaint. Read Marx, Stalin, Mao. Well done good and useful…

        • As a self-constructed man of inviolable integrity, I invite you to set sail, like the Puritans of old, and found a society where only that which you yourself made and earned by your genius and your own, toiling, calloused hands, is yours.

          There, in that perfect and glorious world, your victimhood will end, and you can in those off days when you are not creating wealth for yourself, unchecked by monopolistic government forces, pick up your keyboard and refine for posterity such unpolished gems of wisdom plucked from your extensive readings of political economy and history as:

          “Leftism plays on psychology by first creating the dependency of the people then enforcing your idea that nobody then has a legitimate complaint.”

          (Maybe set aside the bottle as well, now that you are truly happy and free.)

          Set sail my friend. Set sail for a distant shore. Set sail in the hopes you reach a shore. Release yourself from the bonds of servitude.

  6. The only decent excuse for Carlos Hernadez here to spend an entire day enduring a humiliating line, for some “carnet” he didn’t even know what it would be for, would be to make this report for CC. Even so, he didn’t even comment on the pathetic aberration, the miserable populism and ‘jalabolismo’ of all the people in line, hoping for some freebies from ‘el gobielno bolivariano’..or afraid of some reprimand from the decrepit regime.

  7. As expected, Carlos Hernandez, author of this post hasn’t ‘had the time’ to reply.. Guess he’s in another line to get “precio justo’ food.

  8. It seems like a lot of commenters here have never been forced to skip a meal. You don’t seem to understand the situation in Venezuela (or the life outside Caracas). What if this is the only way for him and his family to get food? Have you ever thought of that?

    • Does this incomprehensible, BS. “carnet” give people food? What does t do?? Have you thought about that?

    • How about he told us those reasons in his piece, rather than you making up excuses for him? it would still be condemnable, but at least would give us an insight behind his moral and pragmatical reasoning for such act, instead we got this lame lame brief excuse about “peer pressure” and pity out of someone who clearly IS a chavista

      • I will give you that he could explain the reasoning behind it, but maybe the point of the article wasn’t to show us his moral reasoning (even though it would make the article more interesting and give it more depth). I’m not saying I agree with what he did (I don’t), what I’m saying is that we don’t even know why, maybe there are some other reasons behind it.

        • Well, this and other reports certainly don’t enlighten us about “other reasons”. I’m almost certain the only reasons for such pathetic behavior are: Buscando mango bajito, fear, looking for freebies.

          It is WRONG to get on those pathetic “carnet” lines. (Lines for cheap food I can understand). They don’t even now what the freaking “carnets” are for.

          Does the Tascon list ring the bell?? Look it up.

  9. This is a Shameful piece of shit. I don’t know what is worst, if the detailed steps to get the “Carnet de la Patria” or the superficiality of the author when he describes the process. It’s amazing that a yuppie-pseudo elitist and neo hipster media like Caracas Chronicles used its plattform to banalize the submission which is the real problem behind that fucking “carnet”. This neither might be considered as an “ironical article” nor a critic about the regime’s polices to control the society. This is almost an article that promotes that everybody gets that fucking shit in order to receive some “regalitos”. Stop being so idiots

    • Más idiota se leen adjetivos tan ridículos como “yuppie pseudo elitista y neo hipster”.

      Claramente se ve que no vives en Venezuela, y que no tienes la más remota idea de como es que la gente puede comprar la comida hoy en día, por qué razón se hace de esa forma, o el modus operandi promedio del chavismo.

  10. The point of the whole article is to describe the experience that a regular guy would experience to get the stupid carnet. Absolutely no one in this forum -especially Carlos Hernandez- has ever had any doubt about the oppressive nature of the Carnet de la Patria. As he points out in the post, his experience proved that idea: People don’t know what this piece of plastic is, but yet they waste days trying to get it. Carlos only got a transversal sight of that reality, and found out how effective the measure has been to Maduro’s effort.

    Anyone who has read any of Carlos previous articles would know how dumb is to crucify him for this post. The point of his -via crucis- is pretty obvious (and valuable) to me; but in any case, his or anyone else’s reasons to get that carnet shouldn’t be a matter of discussion to anyone else but himself.

    • Carlos failed to make it clear that those lines are beyond subservient, pathetic, hala-bolas, did I mention pathetic? pointless, and even, in the end, complicit with the Chavista regime. Sheep in line, and Carlos was one of them. Cuban style. How low can people go?

      Granted this article does portray how desperate people are. You have to feel sorry for most of them. But it’s sad to see how clueless they may be.. That mysterious “carnet will probably never facilitate anything, no food, nothing, except a futile attempt at another corrupt Tascon List. They are just scared of not gettng “precio justo” stuff, before the 2018 December elections.

      Last I heard there was a thing called CEDULA. Now “Carnet de la Patria?” What for?

      http://www.perfil.com/internacional/maduro-lanzo-el-carnet-de-la-patria-que-regulara-el-acceso-a-la-comida.phtml

      That’s what the people are afraid of, which, lamentably, was not reported here either.

      • “They are just scared of not gettng “precio justo” stuff,”

        No se trata de “comprar barato para poder ir a la playita”, se trata de “conseguir lo que existe”, ¿Por qué te emperras en ignorar el hecho de que el chavismo tiene un puto monopolio montado con la comida y con todo lo demás?

        No es que TODOS sólo sean unos lambucios que “se merecen al chavismo” como dice tanto imbécil por ahí, se trata de que la gente NO QUIERE botar su tiempo en colas en lugar de ganarse la vida de forma honesta, y de cómo el régimen quiere arrodillar a la población negándoles el derecho a comprar comida.

  11. Carlos, kudos on your excellent description of the trials/tribulations necessary to try to survive in Venezuela without a comfortable nest egg with which to buy bachaqueado basic necessities. Your experience of a 12+ hour wait (even more when the electricity goes out/one’s datos can’t be found in the computerized system) is typical, and puts the lie to Maduro’s recent claim of 6mm+ already carnetizados. The intention of the Govt. is to make the Carnet De La Patria a necessity for virtually all transactions involving Govt. entities (newly now needed to get a driver’s license, soon to get a CLAP food bag, etc. etc.), and, as such, it will become the Venezuelan population electronic control equivalent of the Cuban paper rationing booklet, but more so; in fact, some say it internally automatically registers the owner as a member of the PSUV, which will be very useful for SmartMatic electoral fraud, if/when any elections are ever allowed. Those living in Venezuela will increasingly find the Carnet indispensable for daily survival; those comfortably criticizing Carnet seekers from afar, particularly with the vehemence seen from some on this Blog, should be increasingly seen as despicable….

    • Thanks for the clarifications about the infamous Cubazuelan “carnet”. In such case, what else can you do but get in line? Not to get in that pathetic line. Period. Again, the laughable “carnet” has been around for a long time, it doesn’t do shyt. If you know Venezuela, it ain’t happening.

      Gotta remember that Chavismo’s days are numbered. At the most, until the end of 2018. One should doubt they would crack down on non-carnet people. They tried, initially, with the infamous Tascon List. But they won’t, now. They’re in enough trouble. They are doomed, and they know it. They are just trying to survive 1 more year,, to steal as much as possible, the last millions left and find a safe haven to escape in Cuba or elsewhere. Thus, our ‘vehemence’ shall persist. The day the Cuban-style “carnet” works in Venezuela, let me know, so I get in line.

      As far a Smartmatic, can’t wait, but I think this time they will back down. Other easier fish to fry. The Fraud would be too evident in the Presidential Elections of 2018. They are multi-millionaires already, anyway.

    • I personally will be FUCKED before I bend over and get that card. You watch and see what happens if I can’t buy food and feed my family cause I’m not part of some political party. And I’m right here in the thick of it too.

      • ” You watch and see what happens if I can’t buy food and feed my family cause I’m not part of some political party.”

        Probably nothing besides you and your family starving to death.

        Because that’s the way chavismo will purgue those who won’t kneel.

        And because the MUD will instantly label you as an “infiltrator” if you dare to protest.

        But, hey, I would pay for the chance to watch you knocking the teeth off some chavista’s mug when they spat on your face that “you don’t have the right to eat because you’re a fucking whitey sifrinito escuaca and thus you deserve to die” while flanked by half a dozen armed goons.

  12. Whoa, I’m getting a lot of hate for this piece. So, my main motivation for getting the stupid carnet is to get access to food. I wanted to stick to the chronicle this time, and let you guys connect the dots, but I guess I should have been clearer.

    You see, this year the imports are expected to contract by almost 50%, that means even less food and medicine. One important source of food in my house is the CLAP bag, they already told us the Carnet de la Patria is a requirement for that.

    Journalistic curiosity did play a role, and I honestly though it wouldn’t take me much time. The thing is, these people would have done the line whether I did a chronicle about it or not, it’s important to denounce it and keep a record.

    But yeah, food, definetely food. I’m not after freebies from the govenrment, I just don’t want to lose weight again. Writing for Caracas Chronicles doesn’t magically makes me invulnerable to hunger.

    Think of it as getting the subsidized gasoline for your car. Is it wrong? sure, the government shouldn’t spend the little money they have left on that, but you, as a citizen, have no alternative.

    It’s the same logic. Do I want to depend on the CLAP bags? hell no. Do I have a viable alternative? not really. I’ll keep buying the bags, but that doesn’t mean I turned into a Chavista, I’ll still protest and I’ll still denounce everything. This is a long fight, and in the meantime I have to eat something.

    I’m suprised by your reactions. if you have more questions do ask them, I’m reading

    • I am shocked by people’s reactions too. Your piece helps illustrate to me, one who lives far from venezuela, what this process (and the many many many others like it) are for those miserable people who go through it.

      The whole thing has some Kafkaesque qualities, lines for lines for lines for something that no one really knows what it even does or means.

    • “I’ll keep buying the bags, but that doesn’t mean I turned into a Chavista, I’ll still protest and I’ll still denounce everything. This is a long fight, and in the meantime I have to eat something.”

      If they find out about your internet activism, do you think that they will still give you these CLAP bags?

      Their plan is to neutralize prople by making them ever more dependent on their “solidarity”. If you stop criticising them, it’s ok. I would rather feed my family too.

    • You don’t have to apologise and explain any further to the radicals who just decided that it was best to insult you from their ivory tower. They most definitely lack perspective and could learn a thing or two from history.

      My main concern in all this is: how is the majority of the population ever going to be able to afford food and gasoline at real, international prices? Building up purchasing power, employment, productivity and attracting FDI takes a long time. There is no shortcut around it I am afraid.

    • Gracias Carlos, this is very helpful and best of luck to uou and your family surviving this nightmare. You have nothing but gratitude from me for putting the time to share your struggle with the rest of us, (cowards really) that have left the ship. Don’t be fooled by any of the entitled idiots who are channelling their hate.

  13. “The most outrageous part is that no one really knew exactly what the Carnet de la Patria is for.”

    Ok. So people stand in line all day, hoping for a Filet Mignon from Chavismo? Pathetiic, I reiterate.

    • This attack is timestamped 11 minutes AFTER your “My apologies” post. Can you kindly clarify this apparent inconsistency?

        • If you are out of Venezuela, please don’t come back. People like you will make it all the more difficult to rebuild our broken society after the government falls.

          • Please explain why people like her will make it dificult to rebuild? I think we could all use a little outside influence here. Its pretty obvious that we are the ones who have become boiled and all this only makes sense to us. It’s good to hear once in a while opinions that are outside of this weird, wild and unpredictable ride that we call Venezuela because, really you know in your heart that this shit is not normal! Please don’t unilaterally kick people out of Venezuela, we need all the attention we can get and tourism is important. Venezuelans used to be very hospitable people. It’s sad to see how resentment has turned us all against each other. It’s a free for all, todo el mundo jalando por su lado.

          • Well, half of the bloggers, if not more, seem to perceive this the way I did, dear Emiliana. Read.

          • Oh, and rest assured that I won’t go back to Kleptozuela, as 95% of the 1.5 Million people who were lucky enough to get the hell outta there won’t. Ask, : No one planning in their right minds to go back.

            You see, there are many countries with more business opportunities, education, culture, and especially, less, much less crime to live in. If you compare Caracas with Miami… thank you. See ya later, perhaps on a quick escapade to Margarita Island, or a fast climb to my beloved Piedra El Indio, in the Avila, and Choroni, that’s it..when things are less dangerous over there..

  14. I also went to Plaza Caracas to try and get one but unlike Carlos, I did not stick around.It was a line of about 100 people and no tables or anything had been set up yet at 10am.I would get it if it was a bit quicker or more organized.I mean try going to SAIME these days.It still takes a few hours to do that.Or the bank,Or anything lol.

  15. After reading the comments its clear that we are near the “lets cyberkill each other” moment. BUT, in the real world of Puerto Ordaz? not there yet.

    But as the author explained in his reply, with “this year the imports are expected to contract by almost 50%” Chavismo is determined to push Venezuela into the “lets really kill each other” moment.

    • What chavismo wants is to keep stealing everything while the people shut up and stay in lines until a malandro kills them.

  16. Carlos you are a smart kid, and a great writer. I was glad to get a glimpse into the process. I had heard they ask for twitter and Facebook info. I knew you had to be part of the psuv that was a no brainer. You obviously said yes, you were is that correct Carlos? Well not everyone is in the position to afford the real price of food. But that stupid bag every 2 weeks isn’t feeding us either. Time has to come when we take a stand and say: “we are not going to jump through your stupid fucking hoops anymore.”

  17. As prices rise and more and more things become unattainable all but the most rich venezuelans are going to need a ‘clap bag’ just to survive …….a change in regime might make the distribution more equitable and efficient but even then we are going to see some kind of organized mass rationing of essentials until the economy starts functioning again . There is nothing wrong with this except the Regimes use of the system to extort people into a for the most part fake collaboration with the regime , among the principles which John Rawls believed should guide the activities of a Free and Just Society was the so called ‘safety net’ principle which had the govt protect the less fortunate from the ravages of want and starvation ……!! No one should oppose this on any rational grounds….., what is wrong is the corruption and extortion which accompanies the regimes distribution of clap bags or so called patriotic cards ……!! not the principle of giving aid to people in need ….., !!

    What is really important is that the govt do those things which can make our economy function again , for example end gasoline subsidies and other such like follies ……and that can only be done once this regime has ceased to exist……and a more rational one taken its place….!!

    • Bill
      I have been shipping seeds and lending advice to people to encourage them to devote a few square meters if possible to a “Victory Garden”.
      We are seeing results. The harvests are a morale booster and giving people a little bit of food security.
      Paying the interest on the bonds and emptying the treasury of foreign reserves is insanity. Especially when default is inevitable and access to international bond markets is closed to the regime regardless of whether the interest payments are made.
      The are on the Titanic and they are selling the lifeboats.

  18. Years ago I used to be a big player in the adventure world, mostly as a rock climber. I met my wife during an expedition to climb the sweeping rock wall left Salto Angel. Point is, there have been countless best sellers and page turners about world-class adventures, especially mountaineering – climbing Everest, that kind of thing. Many of these encounter epics, people falling into crevasses, getting cerebral edema, frostbit, caught in storms, and so forth. Many people die. And of course books are articles are written about them all the time.

    From afar, from the comfort of a townhouse as salsa music plays in the background and you sip a coffee con leche and play wise, it’s easy to pass judgement on what Jose did or didn’t do in the time of crisis. But unless you are stuck in that tent at 2,600 feet, or caught in the teeth of the blizzard, or just watched your partner plunge down the entire East Face, nobody can possibly know what it is like up there, and what they might do in their stead. Sure, we all hope for heroic deeds, but those don’t reflect the limitations people work under during a crisis, or the crushing soul murder of numbing traumas and on-going insanity wrought by the protracted epic.

    In other words, passing judgement, from a safe distance, on people’s behavior while caught in an epic, is not only a chickenshit move but shows a kind of gentrified ignorance to what life becomes in a crisis: Survival, every last time.

    That much said, I don’t see change in Venezuela till one of two things happen: When people get so desperate that it becomes a matter of all-out survival, when collectively, it’s a matter of you (the government) or me (the pueblo). Or, when an inspired leader or movement starts an inexorable sea change that cannot be stopped, as happened in the East Bloc. If you find yourself hoping for the later, for an inspired leader to get the movement started, I encourage you to go down to Venenzuela and get cracking.

    • this comment would seem to represent the unfortunate reality of the situation better those previous. thanks for putting things in perspective, for an outsider it is seemingly easy to judge others based on our own circumstances based the prior comments.

  19. A los que andan protestando como se ve que no viven o tienen familia en Venezuela. La última perlita es que los antihipertensivos y otras medicinas te las van a dar los clap. A ver a quién le parece que prefieren no ser sumisos y que su mamá se quede sin medicina. Coño.

    • Por cierto, olvidaste mencionar que los cubanos castristas son tan sádicos que hasta ya no les da pena decirle a la gente que “ellos tienen el control de las medicinas, porque los venezolanos sólo las van a despilfarrar y que deberían dar gracias por ello.”

      Los castristas son tal vez tan acomplejados de superioridad o son tan imbéciles que no saben o no creen que la gente en un arrebato de desesperación o de frustración hasta los pueden matar en el sitio luego de decir semejante burrada.

  20. “A virtue governs a passion as moderation governs lust or courage governs fear…..what is wanted is an antidote to natural selfishness , but wishes do not give birth to horses.”

    “A true political or social order requires the soul to be like a gothic cathedral with selfish stresses and strains helping to hold it up. Abstract Moralism condems certain keystones , removes them and then blames the nature of the stones and the structure when it collapses.”

    “The failure of agriculture in Socialist Collective farming is the best example of this, an imaginary motive takes the place of a real one and when an imaginary motive fails to produce the real effect, those who have not been motivated by it are blamed and persecuted.”

    Devotees of PC are always besotted with the idea of perfecting social life by calling on people to substitute their natural motives with morally heroic and saintly ones, it never works but it makes those devotees righteously proud of their righteous purity to blame the former for their ‘moral flaws’……!!

  21. Chávez and company really succeeded. Not because Carlos finds he needs to go to this stupid charade to have some possible hope of not starving in the near future.

    No, they succeeded because their seeds of hate are now tall and strong vines, strangling the hearts of Venezuelans, chavistas and opposition alike. Thats their legacy, and their ultimate triumph.

    Venezuela will never change if the people that come after this disaster are just as nurtured in hatred as the ones that made it, and decide their satisfaction on getting revenge on somebody, even an ally, is more important that building something for everybody.

  22. The story of Venezuela never was racism, always classism. Rich against the poor, haves being the rich and have-nots being the poor, disdainfully looking down their noses at them, not even letting them have a sniff of the wrapper of the candy they were eating. Then socialism came about. Great in theory but we know socialism doesn’t work, it’s just been proved here in Venezuela for the unteenth time. People are inherently greedy, maybe its because we are crossed with monkeys and it’s in our genes, but it’s in all of us. Bill Bass, morality is the only thing that has ever set us apart and when you die it’s the only thing people will remember about you. Were you a good man all your life but you fucked just one goat, or did you stay the course and listen to your divine intelligence all the time? So that being said, the poor got a taste of the “good life”, a furnished home, big tv, satellite, cell phones, vehicles, brand name clothes etc, and resentment started to tip the other way, you have and I don’t and that’s not right. Your car will feed my entire family for a year and we’re hungry is a government endorsed excuse to hijack a car. So in exchange for all those votes many poor got to taste a utopian life style that was never sustainable. All those loans (cooperativos) bad debt that would never be repaid. It’s still going on. People offered their chance inevitably will sell their souls for a chance to get rich quick. Corruption runs rampant and there is no easy cure to cut that out first before we can rebuild anything.

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