The National Assembly (AN) declared that the decision made by the National Constituent Assembly (ANC) – voiding Freddy Guevara’s parliamentary immunity – was null, explaining once again that the ANC cannot replace Parliament in a decision concerning the granting or denying of immunity: the ANC usurped those functions.

The AN’s Board received representatives from 23 countries for yesterday’s session, thanking them for their commitment with democracy and freedom, as well as for their support for institutions and the Venezuelan people.

Let’s talk finances

AN Speaker Julio Borges explained Parliament’s stance to diplomatic representatives, as well as the procedure that the government must follow in order to refinance the foreign debt, a voluntary process that must include a structural change in the economy. According to Borges, the government is “trapped” between refinancing and opening up to market rules, or continue faltering with no access to markets and a disastrous drop in oil output.

The majority of Parliament agreed not to recognize the debt restructuring, if it’s not submitted for the Legislative Branch’s approval, if the economic model doesn’t change and if transparency is not guaranteed in order to review the payment options used by investors – the Venezuelan State is over $120 billion in debt.

Delcy’s reaction

The head of the ANC took to Twitter to criticize the meeting between diplomats and Julio Borges and restate that he’s responsible for the financial blockades imposed by the U.S. and the current crisis.

Delcy should know that other rating agencies (including Chinese ones) keep lowering Venezuela’s rating and none of them mentions Borges as the reason, instead they focus on the unlikelihood of a restructuring for the government’s lack of credibility and trust, the country’s dwindling international reserves, the inability to create wealth and the fragility of payment sources. All of this put in a blender makes a huge batido of: high risk of default!

Forget about vulture funds, Delcy, nothing’s as ravenous as chavismo.

Let’s talk inflation

Lawmaker Ángel Alvarado reported that, according to estimates of the the National Assembly’s Price Index, the inflation rate for October is 45.5% and the cumulative inflation reached 825.7%.

Alvarado explained that the process is fueled by excessive money-printing, which the BCV uses to finance the fiscal deficit. This problem, he added, is what has Venezuela’s citizens starving to death, remarking that next year will be worse.

According to economist and university professor Natan Lederman, inflation will soar to 12,000% in 2018 due to hyperinflation.

But don’t worry, in the Economic vice-presidency’s meeting that will submit ideas to the ANC, Defense minister Vladimir Padrino López said that “a different economic reality will certainly take off in 2018.” Ah, the adjectives!

Celebrating failure

Public employees had to march from Libertador avenue to Miraflores Palace to celebrate the 100th anniversary of repression, censorship, bans on political parties and unions, and millions of deaths caused by Russia’s civil war and famine.

That is equivalent to celebrating a social and political failure that impacted several generations, but in Nicolás’ view: “There are never bad times in the revolution” – and that’s why he convened the national congress of the Productive Councils of Workers for next week, in which they’ll allegedly present an “economic productive development” plan, a challenge for a nation that suffers post-war level shortages and hyperinflation.

According to Nicolás, his plan is inspired on the October Revolution to build a new society and humanity. Sadly, he didn’t explain that he’ll build those over the ruins of the the current ones.

By the way, the despicable Maradona signed a contract with Nicolás to host a TV program for the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Telesur. Who knows how much he’ll be paid, but nobody expects him to get paid in rupees or yuans.

A political prisoner

Yon Goicoechea ratified his mayoral candidacy for party Avanzada Progresista and expressed the need to maintain respect among Venezuelans and preserve the opposition’s political spaces, while claiming that elections are the path we must follow right now. He said that he left SEBIN dungeons without hatred and that Venezuela needs a process of forgiveness.

If we add to such statements that he thanked Henri Falcón for accepting his candidacy, it’s really hard not to believe that he was coerced to do this. I took note of his phrase: “I don’t want them to imprison me…” – Oh!, and also of the announcement that presidential elections will take place in February.

Abroad

  • The U.S. condemned the decision to try Freddy Guevera, saying that this is another one of the regime’s extreme measures to shut down the democratic space and criminalize dissent. Heather Nauert, spokeswoman for the State Department, condemned the regime’s growing disrespect toward democracy and essential rights in Venezuela.
  • Uruguay’s Foreign minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa urged his Venezuelan counterpart, Jorge Arreaza, to make the government seek ways to settle the debt they have with Uruguayan companies for the purchase of products.
  • Former Latin American and Spanish heads of states gathered in IDEA, urged the opposition and critical chavismo to create “an effort of broad and sincere dedication in the fight against dictatorship,” and they also condemned the dictatorship’s progress and power consolidation, their violent actions against democracy and criminal prosecution against dissidents.

The effect of price controls

In an act surpassing the greatest feats of any wizard you might have seen in your childhood, the National Bureau for the Defense of Social-Economic Rights (Sundde) managed to empty out in less than a week hundreds of butcher shops: they made chicken, beef, pork and even entrails disappear!

If you read Sundde’s Twitter account, you’ll find the promotion of immediate actions for what they call “the political battle for fair prices,” a plan explained through “infographics” made in PowerPoint, with texts that fuel only two ideas: the crisis we’re facing can only be solved with more fanatic bureaucrats inspecting shop owners, and shop owners can only be straightened out with punishments.

For them, shortages, the lack of production and the decline of imports are “disturbing phenomenons.”

Meanwhile, hunger grows worse.

And we got to the Bs. 48,532 per dollar mark yesterday.

16 COMMENTS

  1. Truly amazing that Brother Nicholas has so much power, as he stated, SO much power, yet he can’t do anything to solve the crisis – but makes the crisis worse. Food for thought … that seems like it’s the only food available.

  2. Naky,
    Thank You for your commitment to the truth being told about this criminal regime.
    Time will tell if default is a quicker way to the removal of this regime. Historically default has led to governments falling and changes in regimes.
    The reluctance of other entities to accept any plan to restructure the national debt without the approval of the AN, coupled with the US sanctions, may finally remove the funds that the regime needs to support the military. Without armed and loyal soldiers, Maduro and company can not remain in power.
    Venezuelan assets throughout the world will have liens attached and possibly seized in a frenzy of activities to recover the money owed to bondholders. In most cases one default triggers default clauses in other bonds. This initiates the jockeying for position among the bondholders. Russia and China are not going to sit quietly and hope for the scraps after the feeding frenzy. They will also become litigants and will in effect be on the opposite side than the Maduro regime.
    I have hoped for default even though I understand that it is a double edged sword. I believe the people are going to be victims of starvation and disease with or without default. I don’t see an end to this regime as long as they can sell national assets to stay in power. The default changes everything. The lawyers from the financial institutions will be ruthless as they seek to recover assets. This can even extend to imports that are bought in advance of delivery.
    The international financial institutions have great influence over the politicians in many countries. As long as these bankers have been collecting the interest on Venezuelan debt and making money trading Venezuelan bonds during the default speculations, they have not had much incentive to see any change in leadership in Venezuela.
    Default leaves these politically influential money changers with only one focus. Getting their money. It is much more likely that these people will begin to whisper in the ears of the politicians and media moguls that something must be done. The headlines will focus on the suffering of the Venezuelan people and the criminal activities of the regime. The true motivation will be money.
    The bankers and the long suffering Venezuelan population will see the solution to the problem as regime change.
    Goldman Sachs displayed an indifference to any semblance of morality when they snapped up the discounted bonds. Profit above everything should be their motto.
    Once this criminal regime is gone, debt can be renegotiated, IMF loans can be accessed, national productivity and foreign investment will increase and most importantly the bankers can go back to making money.
    The price of Venezuelan bonds will most likely be tied to speculation of regime change, rather than successful renegotiation of debt with the current regime.
    I am not a fan of international financial institutions. Instead of being the instrument of growth and stability, their recklessness and arbitrage caused suffering, financial collapse and instability throughout the world.
    The enemy of my enemy is my friend in this instance.
    I hope Julio Borges is formulating a plan to settle the default issue once the regime is gone and sending a copy of his plan to every bondholder. With the exception of the behind closed doors negotiations that have been done with Russian and Chinese entities, most Venezuelan debt was issued through US financial institutions and is subject to US legal enforcement.
    A US Federal judge may become the key player in the fall of this regime.

    • John,
      “Once this criminal regime is gone, debt can be renegotiated..”

      No. Once this regime is gone, enough of the $350 billion dollars stolen since 1999 will be recovered and applied to pay national debts. Only 1/3 recovery would pay off the $120 billion Venezuela owes.

  3. If a just-released political prisoner can be forced to run for office, is it a stretch for me to assume one could be forced to write and sign a letter?

  4. You have a bad and irritating habit of making sense. Stop it please or you will offend our hosts, as I have. Do you think if one can be forced to run and one can be forced to sign a letter that an election could be corrupted especially if the actor in all three cases has absolute control over your country.

  5. More William Crispin know-nothing mischief I see.

    Here’s an interesting factoid. The letter was sent out on 9 October 2017 via the Twitter account of………..Yon Goicoechea.

    “Yon Goicoechea, dirigente opositor y preso político, compartió mediante sus redes sociales parte del comunicado.”

    http://www.el-nacional.com/noticias/sociedad/presos-politicos-llaman-participar-las-elecciones-regionales_206882

    Sometimes the silence around this place is absolutely deafening.

    • MRubio
      The boxes will be in Miami tomorrow. I called the shipper today but didn’t get an answer. I may have called too early. I will call tomorrow. I’m not sure if they are open Friday. They are closed some holidays.
      I added cough syrup, lozenges and Nyquil equivalent capsules. I also tossed in some bottles that say sleep aid. The bottles are diphenhydramine (benadryl). It is an anti-histamine and works for allergic reactions like bee stings etc. if someone has an allergic reaction. Epi-sticks are better but they require prescriptions. At least you will have something on hand should an emergency arise. There are about 10 tubes of antibiotic ointment to use for open cuts and injuries also.
      If I can get the boxes sent air freight I will. The items that arrive by ship can take over one month to clear customs. I think air freight clears customs much quicker. I will ask when I speak to the shipper.
      I will be happy to hear that the boxes are in your possession and survived customs.
      Have your guy e-mail me and I will send him a copy of the shipping receipt with the numbers on it for tracking.

  6. The majority of Parliament agreed not to recognize the debt restructuring, if it’s not submitted for the Legislative Branch’s approval…

    That way the only choice for Nicolas and the Chavistas in general is to eat dick.

    I don’t think China & Russia will have what it takes to help out Venezuela and its $120 billion package debt.

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