Photo: Reuters retrieved

According to Hernán Escarrá, who chairs the Constitutional Commission of the ANC, the illegitimate National Constituent Assembly (ANC) is almost ready with the outline of the new Constitution. Even though the theoretical purpose of any Constituent Assembly is to draft and approve a new Constitution, this fraudulent ANC has been acting as a “super-power” usurping the authority of the legitimately elected National Assembly. Nonetheless, this could change if the illegitimate assembly decides to approve the new “Constitution”.

This could change if the illegitimate assembly decides to approve the new “Constitution.”

Should the new “Constitution” be approved through a constitutional referendum? From a strictly constitutional perspective: this is not clear. By Presidential Decree, Maduro “suggested” that the new “constitution” should be approved through a constitutional referendum. But because the ANC has “super-power”, it can decide whether such referendum should be called or not. Several debates have been conducted in the public opinion regarding this referendum. Yet, in my opinion, the debate is based on a wrong perspective: They analyze tactics as strategies, making us believe we only have two possible choices.

Having this in mind, I launched a poll through my Twitter account:

If the illegitimate assembly calls for a constitutional referendum to approve the “Constitution”, should the Venezuelan people participate?

63% answered that the best option would be not to participate
37% answered that the best option would be to participate

Who gave the right answer? Nobody. And I’m going to explain why.

The real deal: tactics vs. strategy

My question included a “concha de mango”, namely, some tricks intended to mislead the answers. I presented two supposed strategies: to participate or not to participate in the referendum. However, those aren’t strategies, but tactics.

The first issue that should be taken into account is that Venezuela doesn’t have electoral integrity conditions, which means that it isn’t possible to have free and transparent elections: the ANC dismantled the weakened rule of law and with this, any possibility of free elections.

No matter what happens, if the National Constituent Assembly decided to approve the new Constitution, it will do it.

Consequently, no matter what happens, if the National Constituent Assembly decided to approve the new Constitution, it will do it. This is precisely why this assembly has “super-power”.

To choose to engage or not in this supposed referendum, should be decided according to the strategy designed to promote a democratization process in Venezuela. This decision is based on tactics or instruments that could work if they are part of a democratization strategy.

The mythic obstacle: is it possible to legitimate the National Assembly?

A common warning regarding the ANC is to avoid any actions that could “legitimate” this body. When I launched my poll, many of my followers warned me that any participation in a referendum called by the National Constituent Assembly will imply that this body would be legitimized.

Let me say something in plain English: It’s not possible to legitimate the National Constituent Assembly.

This body was convened, elected and installed in a clear violation of the Constitution, and because of this, this body is and will be an illegitimate assembly no matter what.

So again: participating or not in the referendum isn’t related with the possibility to “legitimate” the ANC, because nobody can amend the constitutional violations committed by this assembly.

About the strategy and the tactics to achieve it

To promote a democratization process, both optionsparticipating or not participatingcould be potentially good tactics. Let’s review them both.

Not participating is the easier option. Because the ANC is a fraudulent body, it’s not possible to decide anything related to the new “Constitution”, because this “Constitution” will be also an illegitimate decision.

A democratization process in Venezuela will require something more than a passive approach like staying home.

However, a democratization process in Venezuela will require something more than a passive approach like staying home. It will eventually require some kind of mobilization. A different option, thus, is to promote an electoral boycott like boosting political mobilizations against the fraudulent referendum. But political boycotts are difficult to organize.

Participating in the referendum could be a tactic to promote such mobilization. Of course, voting in the constitutional referendum cannot be assumed as a simple electoral tactic, because this referendum will not be a free and transparent election. On the contrary, a possible tactic would be to promote participation in the referendum as a tactic to galvanize mobilizations against the constituent fraud.

It’s time to think about the strategy to promote a democratization process in Venezuela. Only with this strategy in mind, will it be possible to define the appropriate tactics.

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75 COMMENTS

  1. This is the same type of thinking that came up during the last ilegitimate elections. I am amazed that such a clear minded analyst like Hernandez seriously considers participating in a constitutional referendum as a democratizacion strategy and uses a rather neboulous distinction beteween tactics and strategy to justify it.
    If one decides that the ANC is ilegitimate, that the regime is ilegitimate, that another constitution is a vulgar political maneuver, what is the use of advising participation as a strategy, in anenvironment controlled by the ilegitimate regime? There are other paths of civic protest not considered here , sucha as a general strike, that would be a much more ethical and assertive strategy. The suggestion of Dr. Hernandez plays into the hands of a regime which is in its death throes. Push it down, don’t flirt with it

      • Ditto Coronel, excellent post.

        It is almost as this is a strategy/tactic straight from the Falsonistas at the Arepa who present us with a false dichotomy when there are plenty of other options that need to be explored.

        Hey, Jose, your “concha de mango” is just another rhetorical trap. One side soft and mushy and covered with flies, the other side still firm and holding its form for now; nevertheless at the end of the day it all rots into shit.

        Falsonista analysis through and through…and this rhetorical slight of hand is why Chavismo has stayed in power for almost 2 decades.

        No participation in this bullshit and throwing these scum out is the only solution.

    • Exactly Coronel. But please consider Q (CC) has always leaned left and nonviolent and expedient.

      Besides who has time to read a constitution? Or follow it? Just wait for the next one.. that’ll fix it.

  2. This is the same stupid question, again and again. I don’t like your election. I don’t my choices. So rather than participate, I’m going to hold my breath until you go away.

  3. To participate in any way, shape, or form in ANY activity that this regime comes up with allows them to say:

    “Hey, look! We are indeed the true representation of the Venezuelan people. Buy our bonds, lend us money, join our JVs, allow us to indebt the country for generations to come so we can continue to pad our foreign bank accounts! WE ARE LEGITIMATE and the world should treat us accordingly!”

    If Venezuela is ever going to recover from this nightmare, it will have to be with a clean slate, with no baggage left over from this regime. That is why the AN must continue to exist and to remind the World that any agreements signed by the existing, illegitimate regime will become null and void upon it’s downfall.

    • The MUD is the traitor, many times over but especially following 2016 nonbinding referendum, and then Falcon and again Allup.. until you get rid of them.. nomchange..

  4. If you vote you do legitimize MADBURRO and his cohorts of thieves. DO NOT VOTE, NOT EVEN ”NO” OR ”WHITE” COUNT THE VOTERS, TAKE THEM PICTURES, POST IN WEBSITES, SOCIAL OR NO.

  5. “Is this debate preventing us from seeing other options in the grand scheme of things?”

    Yes. That you are living in Klepto-Cubazuela, a 5th world country full of under-educated and/or corrupt pueblo-people, for the most part, and that the only way out is by force.

    • Also, that you you be praying for another MPJ of sorts: only way to straighten that lamentable Kleptocratic mess up, on the longer run. Kleptocratic tropical Mess full of ignorant, corrupt indios, that is. Kleptocratic: new word.

      • Correction, you SHOULD be praying for another MPJ of sorts, or a Pinochet: sadly that’s the only way to transform Klepto-Cubazuela into another Chile in less than 10 years. Otherwise, with any MUDCRAP transition “democratic government”, Kleptozuela will remain a 5th world, under-educated and corrupt mess for decades.

      • Kleptocracy (from Greek κλέπτης kléptēs, “thief”, κλέπτω kléptō, “I steal”, and -κρατία -kratía from κράτος krátos, “power, rule”) is a government with corrupt leaders (kleptocrats) that use their power to exploit the people and natural resources of their own territory in order to extend their personal wealth and …

        this is the moment of truth. I understand why you don’t trust me; no worries.

        • Utilizing the good ole dictionary is a good start. Call a spade a spade. Narco-Tirania de Cleptomanos iletrados, for example, describes that decadent, Kleptozuelan Kleptocracy much better than “El Gobieleno Bolivariano”.. absurd, innacurate terms that even people from the opposition continue to misuse. How about Neo-Communist Anarchy? Or Tropical Den of Thieves, malandros, putas, ignorantes mal educados y bandidos? Because, in large part, that’s all that’s left of what Venezuela once was. That’s the problem such gigantic lack of real education in Klepto-Cubazuela: People, at all levels, don’t even know how to use proper language and call things for what they really are.

  6. At this point it matters little if Chavistas have or don’t have vested and legitimate authority to do whatever the hell they want to do. They’ve lost the financial and organizational wherewithal to effectively do much of anything, if they ever did. As naky said, they are becomming increasingly irrelevant with each passing day, as the country drops deeper into chaos and destitution. Arguing over legal fine points, and the effecitive diferences betwen tactics and strategy feels about as relevant and besides the point – however sage and correct – as all the bosh and spin spewing from Maduro’s pie hole. At this point one thing seems obvious: The madman and his band of incompetants won’t step aside and have no shame no matter how far down the shitter they’ve plunged the country. Even the lust for power has become a joke because their power to repress and misrepresent notwithstanding, thy are essentially powerles to Do anything but somehow, and tragically, suvive. With no outside powers willing to effect change, the world is resigned to watch the corpse rot. Never would have thought this possible but it shows the shortcoming of talk and logic and diplomatic “solutions” against an intractable sitting “government.” Sad.

    • The opposition? They are content to be named the new captain of the sinking Titanic. They are Chavismo sans Chavez.

      Not that El Pueblo want meaningful change… they are just as culpable. If El Gigante were reincarnated today, they would be happy to give him 10 years to sort things out.

      • Hahaha awesome to see a Venezuelan lawyer raked over the coals today.

        BTW Venezuelan lawyers are the most scummy lawyers in the world, especially Chavista Venezuelan lawyers.

        Absolutely crucified by comment sections today…hilarious!!!!

  7. There is no other option, at this time, but to hope (and I hate that word in this context) that a bloody uprising occurs, brought on by civilians. Absent one, say hello to SomaliZuela.

    It’s a foregone conclusion that there will be no MUD leaders involved. They simply do not have the stomach to go along with the concomitant loss of life that this will produce. The Hobson’s choice they face is not an enviable one by any stretch of the imagination.

    The time has come for hard choices for what is left of the political class, but I do not believe they have the guts to make those choices. No one, after all (except a psychopath) wants death and destruction as part of an answer to a problem, but I’m afraid that is all that is left vs. continuing the road to Somali like existence. Some hard calculus is going to be needed in the MUD (or whatever the oppo is called nowadays), and I’m afraid they know where the answer lies and do not wish to acknowledge it.

    There will be no invasion of foreign powers. The most we can hope for is immediate relief post conflict, and economic relief when the dust settles. Forget the US, forget Colombia or Brazil. They will not pay the price for us, nor should we expect them to.

    And yes, I am willing to go and fight and die if needed. And I’m not Venezuelan on paper, but I am at heart.

    • ** “It’s a foregone conclusion that there will be no MUD leaders involved. They simply do not have the stomach to go along with the concomitant loss of life that this will produce.”

      It’s not that they “can’t stomach the amount of dead bodies”, chapriles is responsible for the almost 200.000 murders the tyranny has commited in the last 6 years and he sleeps perfectly fine during nights.

      The mud “leadership” honchos are PAID EMPLOYEES OF THE REGIME, A FAKE OPPOSITION created with the sole goal of WASTING TIME so the regime can keep stealing and killing.

      ** “There will be no invasion of foreign powers.”

      Exported colectivos such as the “los mamagüevos del tren de aragua” are easily neutralized in those other countries. It’s the farc, eln, hamas and hezbollah terrorists what those countries will care about, a handful of sissy choros mugging people don’t serve another purpose than advancing the xenophobia campaigns against the venezuelan exiles, a bunch of terrorists slaughtering dozens and hundreds of people daily is another business.

      ** “They will not pay the price for us…”

      That’s not their problem, their problem is that they know that there is NO ONE TO PICK UP THE REINS OF POWER after chabizmo has been ousted.

  8. It’s almost not worth replying. Feels like beating a dead horse, but here, for_enésima_ vez:
    Nosotros los pendejos know that the ANC is illegitimate and that participating in any acts they do won’t legitimate it.
    But you need to look at it from the eyes of someone outside of the country. In their view, us participating will show them that ANC is a legitimate body that governs our country.
    Then again, it’s not like the international comunity will help us anyway.

    • No one who even slightly fallows the tragedy that has been going on in Venezuela is even remotely fooled into thinking Chavista’s have any legitimacy. Let alone credibility or competence. Participate or don’t but the world knows how corrupt and despicable the regime is.

  9. “There will be no invasion of foreign powers. The most we can hope for is immediate relief post conflict, and economic relief when the dust settles. Forget the US, forget Colombia or Brazil. They will not pay the price for us, nor should we expect them to.”

    This cannot be emphasized enough. The US has ZERO interest in saving Venezuela’s bacon. The vast majority of the citizenry are infatuated with the concept that they can get something for nothing (Marxism 101). If, however, the citizenry were thought to have a more Calvinist mindset (hard work, discipline, frugality), I wouldn’t doubt for a second that there would be some sort of Marshall Plan afoot.

    But, “you can wish in one and hand crap in the other, and see which gets filled first.”

    “And yes, I am willing to go and fight and die if needed. And I’m not Venezuelan on paper, but I am at heart.”

    That is awesome to read. Know that fighting and dying are easier said than done, but know also that fighting for a cause you believe in makes life worth living.

    One thing that you must know: You have to fight by your adversary’s vicious rules. Not your own “high-minded” rules. For example, Chavismo has NO PROBLEM with threatening the families of their opponents. Are Venezuelans seeking remedy ready to cross that line?

    • ** ” The US has ZERO interest in saving Venezuela’s bacon.”

      That’s not true, they’re not interested in having a base for terrorists in the continent, the problems with the intervention are these:

      1- Other presidents in the region are against it because the “imperialism” myth-complex.
      2- The US know that there isn’t a serious and organized team of people to take the reins of power in Venezuela that are willing to drive a right-wing dictatorship to quell the chabizta’s terrorists that will start slaughtering people by hundreds every day to recover the power.
      3- The population displacement has GREATLY benefitted other countries, because in the first 16 years, most of the exiles were MIDDLE-CLASS PEOPLE WITH COLLEGE DEGREES under their arm, in other words, EXPENSIVE HUMAN CAPITAL ASSETS, it’s only from two years to now that the xenophobia campaigns have begun to spring around, paid by boli-manures to keep other venezuelans from discovering them.

      ** “. Are Venezuelans seeking remedy ready to cross that line?”

      More than you think.

      Sure, there are still those who hold to the “pacifist route” because deep in their minds they still want to believe that “that way chabiztas won’t have an excuse to come to kill people later”, which is a fallacy, because the chabizta/communist revenge will be because THEY LOST THE POWER, simple as that.

      • We’ll have to disagree on that point. There is nothing for the United States in Venezuela worth ONE US soldier dying for. The “terrorist” angle is a ruse. It is already a base for lawlessness, and any intervention by the US won’t change the cultural mindset.

        I would estimate that 60% of Venezuelans are Chavista with another 15% being Chavista Lite. They don’t want a Calvinist cultural mindset foisted upon them. This was evident even before Chavez.

        Any US invasion/intervention isn’t going to do a bit of good. There is nothing but downside to any US intervention.

        As far as patriotic Venezuelans picking up a gun and fighting back? I don’t see it. One guy tried, and he was abandoned. Venezuela is too far gone. But… who knows? I hope I am wrong.

        • I still see the upsides of U.S. military intervention. Of course, you can’t put a “price” on the loss of young American lives, but the $ cost isn’t high, and we’re talking about a pretty quick operation.

          Rebuilding the country is a different story, but isn’t this something that has to be dealt with in any possible future scenario? Whether there’s regime change through bullet or ballot?

        • ** “There is nothing for the United States in Venezuela worth ONE US soldier dying for.”

          How many US soldiers died when the US wiped out from the world’s face that chemical weapons plant in Syria some months ago? I guess none, since it was a bombing.

          How many soldiers died when a drone killed one of the most dangerous daesh bosses months ago? Yeah, no one either, because drones aren’t people.

          ** ” The “terrorist” angle is a ruse.”

          No, it’s true and it’s been proven time and again:

          http://www.thetower.org/5338-pompeo-iran-hezbollah-presence-in-venezuela-poses-serious-threat-to-u-s/

          https://www.infobae.com/america/venezuela/2017/08/08/hezbollah-impulsa-al-vicepresidente-tareck-el-aissami-como-reemplazo-de-nicolas-maduro-en-venezuela/

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Funding_of_Hezbollah

          “In a study by the Center for a Secure Free Society (SFS), at least 173 people from the Middle East were caught with Venezuelan documentation. The majority passed through Caracas security improperly and traveled to Canada. The SFS states that the Venezuelan government has been instrumental in providing documents to “Iran and other extremists seeking to enter North America without being detected. According to Joseph Humire, Executive Director of SFS, those caught were from “Iran, Iraq, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon” and that “most were from Iran, Lebanon and Syria. 70% came from those countries and had some connection with Hezbollah”. The majority allegedly had Venezuelan passports, IDs, visas and in some cases, even Venezuelan birth certificates. ”

          The threat exists and it’s out there.

          ** “I would estimate that 60% of Venezuelans are Chavista with another 15% being Chavista Lite. ”

          This is the same baseless and unfounded bullcrap that US commies use to justify all the atrocities commited by the tyranny, with phrases such as that one you typed or “Venezuelan people voted for maduro, thus maduro must stay until he dies of old age”

          chabiztas are less than 12% in Venezuela, there aren’t any “lites” nor “maduristas”, they are ALL THE SAME THING, and half of them lie about admitting being chabiztas, thus lowering the number of “hardcore chabiztas” to less than 5%.

          ** “Any US invasion/intervention isn’t going to do a bit of good. There is nothing but downside to any US intervention.”

          I explained the actual and real reasons in my previous post, it’s not my fault you are trying to wield that pathetic pseudo-argument of “no, you deserve it”

          ** “As far as patriotic Venezuelans picking up a gun and fighting back?”

          The thick of the population was brainwashed during more than 50 years telling them that they don’t have the right to protect their lives.

          The “millions fighting everywhere and rushing gallinitas nazis babiecas” is a myth, as it’s been in every dictatorship, they fall either because a small group comes and offs the heads, because the dictators decide to get complete impunity for their crimes (like Zimbabwe) or because their job was done (Chile)

        • ** “There is nothing for the United States in Venezuela worth ONE US soldier dying for.”

          How many US soldiers died when the US wiped out from the world’s face that chemical weapons plant in Syria some months ago? I guess none, since it was a bombing.

          How many soldiers died when a drone killed one of the most dangerous daesh bosses months ago? Yeah, no one either, because drones aren’t people.

          ** ” The “terrorist” angle is a ruse.”

          No, it’s true and it’s been proven time and again:

          http : //www.thetower.org/5338-pompeo-iran-hezbollah-presence-in-venezuela-poses-serious-threat-to-u-s/

          https : //www.infobae.com/america/venezuela/2017/08/08/hezbollah-impulsa-al-vicepresidente-tareck-el-aissami-como-reemplazo-de-nicolas-maduro-en-venezuela/

          https : //en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Funding_of_Hezbollah

          “In a study by the Center for a Secure Free Society (SFS), at least 173 people from the Middle East were caught with Venezuelan documentation. The majority passed through Caracas security improperly and traveled to Canada. The SFS states that the Venezuelan government has been instrumental in providing documents to “Iran and other extremists seeking to enter North America without being detected. According to Joseph Humire, Executive Director of SFS, those caught were from “Iran, Iraq, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon” and that “most were from Iran, Lebanon and Syria. 70% came from those countries and had some connection with Hezbollah”. The majority allegedly had Venezuelan passports, IDs, visas and in some cases, even Venezuelan birth certificates. ”

          The threat exists and it’s out there.

          ** “I would estimate that 60% of Venezuelans are Chavista with another 15% being Chavista Lite. ”

          This is the same baseless and unfounded bullcrap that US commies use to justify all the atrocities commited by the tyranny, with phrases such as that one you typed or “Venezuelan people voted for maduro, thus maduro must stay until he dies of old age”

          chabiztas are less than 12% in Venezuela, there aren’t any “lites” nor “maduristas”, they are ALL THE SAME THING, and half of them lie about admitting being chabiztas, thus lowering the number of “hardcore chabiztas” to less than 5%.

          ** “Any US invasion/intervention isn’t going to do a bit of good. There is nothing but downside to any US intervention.”

          I explained the actual and real reasons in my previous post, it’s not my fault you are trying to wield that pathetic pseudo-argument of “no, you deserve it”

          ** “As far as patriotic Venezuelans picking up a gun and fighting back?”

          The thick of the population was brainwashed during more than 50 years telling them that they don’t have the right to protect their lives.

          The “millions fighting everywhere and rushing gallinitas nazis babiecas” is a myth, as it’s been in every dictatorship, they fall either because a small group comes and offs the heads, because the dictators decide to get complete impunity for their crimes (like Zimbabwe) or because their job was done (Chile)

          • You are living in a fantasy world if you believe that any intervention would be without boots on the ground.

          • You don’t seem to have left the years of the cold war, where the “interventions” are always carried out like in the WWII or thinking they are like the fiasco that was Vietnam War.

          • Ulamog, are you a Venezuelan, pining for a US intervention?

            Or are you a US citizen who dreams of the glory days of “Big Stick” diplomacy?

            I am curious as to what your perspective is.

            The US has no “secret weapon” that can not only be used from afar, but take out singular suspects with surgical precision (while leaving the innocent unharmed). Nor does it have two Black Hawks full of “Expendibles” who can swoop in and topple a government and change the hearts and minds of adoring Chavistas with minimal blood loss.

            Nor does any of us live in a vacuum. Wanting Maduro gone, Chavismo dead and Venezuela no longer a failed state is one thing. Pulling it off without every other nation on the planet hating the US is another.

            So if you have a cunning and subtle plan on how to revive Venezuela, free its people and keep a single drop of American blood from spilling on Venezuelan soil, I would love to hear about it.

          • As I already explained in another comment in this post, anybody who cuts the head of the chabizta beast will be hailed as national hero for generations for 90% of the venezuelan population.

            And that’s my “¿Y tú qué propones?” answer: To oust the regime by WHATEVER MEANS NECESSARY, because the regime is part of an invading force that’s destroying the country.

            And since you’re so focused on the “benesuela is a shithole and thus benesuelans deserbe chabismo”, I won’t be wasting any more time replying to you.

    • “One thing that you must know: You have to fight by your adversary’s vicious rules. Not your own “high-minded” rules.”

      In a fight like this one, there are no rules but to survive and win. Everything else is window dressing.

      Time for the sin-eaters to begin to eat sins for the rest.

      • The only two rules are:

        1- “The innocent have the right to defend their properties and lives”

        2- “The invaders and their collaborators have NO RIGHTS because they are THE ENEMY.”

  10. And about the article, here’re my two cents:

    I’ve heard that the trampamatic machines and the GNBs (gallinitas nazis babiecas) make a very good replacement for…

    TINDER.

  11. “Participating in the referendum could be a tactic to promote such mobilization. Of course, voting in the constitutional referendum cannot be assumed as a simple electoral tactic, because this referendum will not be a free and transparent election. On the contrary, a possible tactic would be to promote participation in the referendum as a tactic to galvanize mobilizations against the constituent fraud. ”

    The problem is that the “leadership” ALWAYS BETRAYS the people AT THE VERY LAST MINUTE and sends people home to “drain the anger dancing salsa” because “there wasn’t a fraud” or “because they are more”

    Lame-ass excusas that’ve been used since 2006 when it was CRYSTAL CLEAR that chabizmo was at the historical low point of LESS THAN 13% after the 2005 boycott (Which was cut dead by the coordinadora’s leadership because “they didn’t want violence and elections were won even by one vote”)

    Why have they been SAVING the regime by beheading ALL the protest movements that have sprung? Because they ARE EMPLOYEES OF THE REGIME.

  12. Sorry all, these are very nice opinions but there is no conclusion.

    This is where the rubber hits the road. I don’t even understand what the writer is pursuing. It’s clear you all in Venezuela with a voting card of whatever is needed, ought not to vote.

    The mission critical for this farce should be to sabotage that subterfuge.

    – During the first year of Chavez in power, his vision was to change the ”Moribund Constitution (sic)” And he used that Hernan Escarra diabolical monster as his ”salesman” but all Venezuelan believed this fat guy was independent. I clearly remember the animal talking in that fatidic month of July 1999. I was accidentally left in Haiti on my way from Kingston to Santo Domingo.

    – Chavez had just been elected with 56% of votes on a high participation turnout (64% of around 9.8 million potential voters) [I anticipate some people arguing that ”they didn’t vote for Chavez”, or that ”Chavez won with only 36% of all voters (*), etc.]

    – That fat full of shit monster Herman Escarra sold Venezuelan out to vote 72% in favor of the change of the Moribund Constitution to the new republic Constitution. The turnout was smaller 4.8 million voters of 10.9 able to vote. The other 6 million voters stayed home playing dominoes and drinking beer, going to the mall to purchase presents for Christmas; certainly buying or ordering a pernil, BLACK-LABEL JW whiskey; etc. God forgives me.

    – nobody noticed that one more million voters had been added to the population and this is debatable. Somebody might want to clarify.

    Summing up: that day 15-December-1999 Venezuelan had sealed their fate.

    Now, you continue this silly discussion when about what’s the best of vote or no vote!!! Unbelievable, Venezuelan never learn.

    You should sabotage this farce and I suggest some ideas: panic in a polling station; an innocent voter in line to vote could have a serious accident; transformers could get in-fire; there are hundreds of little things that can happen.

    BTW: Madburro has no balls, that we know, so next week nothing will happen, he will keep the DICOM ROE SYSTEM will remain unchanged, the reported gasoline price will be 0.9 BVS/litre, and also a flex timetable until one day the gas price reaches international pricing

    The party carries on: Dollar black market well and alive; and potentially the creation of an additional to existing gasoline black market.

    Go vote, it doesn’t change shit.

    (*) 56%x64% = 36%

    • The podrío won with less votes than Lushinchi in the 83, which means he actually won with barely 30% of the votes, and the election was suspected to be rigged too, since all the rent parasites had already AGREED with him that they would continue looting the country’s vaults, a deal which has been throughtly carried until today.

      It’s also known that people in Venezuela have been brainwashed since the 60s to hate any trace of capitalism, as it was a crucial part of the invasion orchestrated by the castrocuban manure that wanted to seize the oil so the castros would remain unpunished for their crimes.

      • Not necessarily, all the Venezuelans I have ever met in the USA, voted for Chavez, which means only one thing. My last trip to the patria was 6 years ago or so. I’m too far. I don’t understand how you live day-to-day. The AA flight became too expensive and my company sent a “no-way Jose”, you will never fly again to Venezuela under our watch. Not just to me. then my travel insurance excluded Venezuela, and I’m on medicines to survive. My job: collecting LatAm intelligence for my class. Who knows how many intruders and traitors are here?

        • “… which means only one thing…”

          That they were a bunch of enchufado garbage.

          chaburro manure that are part of the 5% of Venezuela’s population.

  13. The masses don’t care who is in charge. Replace China with Venezuela

    Iron rice bowl
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    “Iron rice bowl” (simplified Chinese: 铁饭碗; traditional Chinese: 鐵飯碗; pinyin: tiě fàn wǎn) is a Chinese term used to refer to an occupation with guaranteed job security, as well as steady income and benefits.[1] The Chinese term can be compared to the similar (but not identical) English concept of a “job for life”. Traditionally, people considered to have iron rice bowls include military personnel, members of the civil service, as well as employees of various state run enterprises (through the mechanism of the work unit).[2]

    Because the “Iron Rice Bowl” guaranteed a stable standard of living regardless of the amount of effort made by the worker, the term is sometimes (depending on the specific context) used to describe unmotivated and/or unproductive workers.[citation needed]

    Recent moves at cutting benefits and privatization of various state run businesses in Taiwan such as the Taiwan Railway Administration and China Airlines have led many in those industries to believe that their iron rice bowls are in jeopardy, and has led to strikes (and threats thereof), as well as being the subject of much political debate.

    • USA is no different. I’m looking at you California, Illinois, New York, New Jersey, Hawaii.

      Step 1: Give public employees unsustainable lifetime benefits and substantial early retirements without any realistic tax base/rates to pay for them. They deserve it, because evil rich.

      Step 2: Go broke because there is no actual way to pay for the unsustainable lifetime benefits and substantial early retirements already given to public employees. Blame it on evil rich.

      Step 3: Tell public employees that you can no longer fill their iron rice bowls. Shit storm and finger pointing ensues. Nothing resolved or changed. Blame it on evil rich.

      Step 4: Kick the can down the road far enough that the final reckoning will hopefully not be on your watch. Blame it on evil rich.

    • The masses in Venezuela will follow ANYONE that gives them these three things:

      1- The chance to LIVE FROM THEIR WORK (Which implies completely eradicating the communist economic model where the citizens are less than slaves)

      2- Stopping the malandro manure from slaughtering dozens of innocents per day.

      3- The head of ALL the chavista highest honchos in a platter (maburro, dioscapo, madrino, silvita and so on…)

    • An excellent analogy.

      I am not Venezuelan. I only married one. But over the last 30 years, I have learned something about the mental goings on in the minds of Venezuelans I am related to, have made friends with, and have met as acquaintances. Venezuelans are just like everyone else in that they want to provide for their own needs, their families needs and to prosper. The difference, however, is the process. Some want to earn it. Some think it is owed to them.

      I suspect the reason for this difference lies in the differing histories/cultures of northern Europe and the Iberian (and Apennine) peninsula. I guess it never occurred to me that some cultures (Iberian peninsula) didn’t have the same Calvinist work ethic/mind set. I can’t blame Catholicism, as my dad was raised Catholic and he busted his ass just as much as any proper Lutheran/Methodist/Presbyterian.

      But something happened somewhere, and the dominant cultures diverged.

      ———

      Curiously, Gordon, I have a minor in Chinese history (emphasis 1850’s-Gang of Four), and this “job for life” belief is actually pretty new. While there was a very rigid hierarchy that is actually quite ancient, it wasn’t until after Mao that these petty party members started in with “lifetime job security”. If the modern Chinese are fabulous at anything, it is taking from one culture and perfecting it to their own. Prior to 1980, there was no such thing as job security!

      • “Some want to earn it. Some think it is owed to them.”

        And how does this make them any different than everyone else on the planet? Pull up your bootstraps and earn your way versus “cradle to grave” by big government?

        • “And how does this make them any different than everyone else on the planet?”

          Same situation in Venezuela as in the United States. Just different percentages?

          • I can accept that answer.

            The good news (for the US and elsewhere) is that probably a much higher percentage of the “pull up your bootstraps” types than the “you owe me” types emigrated from Venezuela to US and elsewhere over the last 20 years, whereas this is bad news for Venezuela, since they weren’t in the majority to begin with. Like the first wave of Cubans in the 1960s. Productive people. Same with Russians/Eastern Euros that managed to escape to the West prior to 1989-91. Chinese and Indians, same. Vietnamese, same. I run into them professionally all the time. Many of them made it straight to the hated evil rich or at least the suspect middle class in a single generation. I haven’t heard a single one say they’d go back if things improved in their homeland. They’ve moved on.

          • You are absolutely correct. Venezuela is going to be stuck with too many riding on the wagon and nobody willing to pull it. Worse, nobody around to fix the wagon when the wheels come off.

            I can tell you that as an employer, I appreciate immigrants who show up at our borders with a desire to not only work, but to achieve. The shame is that Venezuela (when I first visited in 1988) had so much going for it.

  14. THERE CAN ONLY BE ONE REASON FOR THIS ARTICLE !!!

    Jose wants to take a Census of all commentators here on CC.

    He knew if he offered a carnet de patria, or carnet de gasolina, we would not bite.

    But write the most idiotic article he could, we are out like wolves.

  15. Dale, you made my day “Jose wants to take a Census of all commentators here on CC. He knew if he offered a carnet de patria, or carnet de gasolina, we would not bite. But write the most idiotic article he could, we are out like wolves”

    you’re incapable of killing a fly.

    and I making some progress.

  16. AG is right by the way, the difference is as respect early eastern Europe migration, or Cambodia & Vietnam in the 70/80, or 1960 Cubans is that they really integrated and moved on. Forgot the motherland without considering ever returning. A Vietnam friend reminded me today.

    Venezuelan never migrated unless exceptional circumstances mostly professional. Now it’s more like the Marielitos. And Venezuelan look they are entitled to something, difficult prioritizing, things upside down. They consider the US government a big government. It isn’t there yet, only when Democrats take over with Sanders, Ocasio girl, the 14 yr old governor of Vermont. I mean when socialists take over, then we will have a really big government.

  17. Most Venezuelans from the first waves of inmigration to the US where already heavily americanized when they moved there , many spoke english and found all things american fascinating , moreover they were often disdainful of what they felt were reprehensible features of typical venezuelan customs and habits …..you can notice this when looking at the Venezuelans who live in those suburbs which concentrate the greatest number of Venezuelan in Miami , there is no local venezuelan social club, people really take to their american lives with gusto, socializing with non venezuelans is more than normal customary ….., very little connational solidarity …, have friends living there who look at Venezuela as an awkward past , they may love their families and venezuelan foods but they have assimilated very easily into their new milieu. More recent inmigrants may be less americanized , but people should not understimate the strong influence of american culture in the Venezuelan middle class ….
    Of course all of them hate the regime and all it stands for ….but Ive seen among them the same hatred of ‘socialism’ that animates the most motivated of Trump supporters …

    • Interesting comment.
      It reeks of distain from a person who I guess feels that America inferior.
      (I’ll assume you have the same feeling for the Portuguese, or Spanish immigrant.)

      How dare a person seek a different life than what the homeland offered.
      Traitors.

      Of course you would NOT have a problem, with a large community of Americans, in Caracas, who isolate themselves in “social Clubs”, barbeque hamburgers and hotdogs, watch football, speak english, and pine for home.
      yeah right!! You’d call them gringos, harp about them NON assimilating in YOUR country, and bitch that they are “taking” all the oil riches that are rightfully yours.

      • Dale, just to clarify the concept of a traitor. Venezuela withdrew the passports of my children because they didn’t have a Cedula de Identidad. That was 18 years ago. Fortunately, they never lived in Venezuela, were born in France, and eventually got citizenship from France and the USA. Then I became an enemy of Venezuela, abandon my citizenship legally speaking, and became a traitor. A free man finally yet traitor according to the definition.

        • Yes, I am “that sensitive”.

          Sensitive to bullshit that somehow you and bill find sweet and fulfilling.

          Oh, and I have my big boy pants on.

          Question is…. are your panties interfering with your need for a gulp of Kool Aid?

      • You don’t know what you’re talking about.

        Venezuela was just native indians and a small Spanish population. It was like until oil was discovered in Maracaibo and triggered mass immigration from all of the world.

        Those social clubs existed because their European culture was perceived to be superior than the local one in Venezuela. Eventually Venezuelan culture was molded and took from all those immigrants that arrived.

        That doesn’t happen with Venezuelan coming to the U.S (more often than not being the right phase) because Venezuela’s middle and upper class culture comes from Europe and mixed in some American values making it similar and on the same level as American culture.

        Almost anyone who grew up middle class or higher was taught two languages minimum. English being one of the most common second one.

        • What you see with these thugs ruling Venezuela isn’t a representing of our culture. It’s their continual destruction of it. That’s not what Venezuela was and not how we were raised.

          It’s not what most middle class Venezuelans carry within them.

  18. “Of course all of them hate the regime and all it stands for ….but I’ve seen among them the same hatred of ‘socialism’ that animates the most motivated of Trump supporters”

    Well Bill, American life is pretty good. We have our problems, to be sure. And bad things happen to good people sometimes. Everywhere on the planet. But, you can still replace your car battery and tires, buy motor oil, and my local Costco out here on a small Hawaiian island in the middle of the Pacific has more toilet paper than half of Caracas.

    Socialism (“who’s sole purpose is communism” Thanks for that, Vlad) has done such wonderful things for humanity the last 100 years or so, and Chavez certainly did great things for their families in Venezuela.

  19. We are all totally ignoring that our bigger, better, faster, more society is unsustainable as well. I’ve been in Venezuela for most of my adult life now and when I go to Canada every year for a visit, I never fail to be impressed by they excessiveness of everything. You go to a restaurant and the portions are huge. I go to my childhood friends place and my kids and her kids are having a ball together, her kids have a whole room full of toys and basically ocupy the whole house whereas I complain when I observe the kids have taken over 10% of our personal space. And so many clothes!!! I mean my kids have clothes (10X more then their peers) but these kids have clothes they never wore and out grew! And meal times! These kids barely touch their plates and then are snacking on other crap while said untouched plate gets scraped into the garbage. My kids clean their plates and not a scrap remains of our meals even if the last of it gets mixed in with the dog food. My parents dogs can’t have any human food and even bones are off limits so I felt for them (my dogs) when I watched my parents throw away mass quantities of perfectly good dog food. I could go on and on about how nobody needs 3 cars and so much shit and toys and how the average canadians yearly overall consumption could feed my whole town for a year. People here live off a fraction of what people in North America live off of. Should the balance be so tipped? Is the final stage of capitalism always going to be this gross excessiveness?
    These are questions that keep me awake at night.

    • They have been used to have a lot of everything.

      It’s basically the same in Venezuela, instead that most of people in that country have gotten used to have very little of everything or nothing at all.

    • Well, Marc, this “socialist” politician in the US, Bernie something or other, says the same thing. Nobody needs all these choices and all this stuff. The man has 3 houses, too, or so they say.

      My wife buys a LOT of shoes. Nobody needs the amount of shoes she owns. But, try telling her to stop. Maybe if she was thrown in jail or something and had all her shoes confiscated by government? That would be better for all concerned, or at least for my VISA bills.

      P.S., we are off to the Maritimes next month. I will keep my eye out for people with too much stuff on PEI and report back to you!

      Try to get some sleep in the meantime. You have bigger problems in Venezuela, and a family to watch out for.

  20. I get Hernández. The tactic is consistent with a democratization strategy, in this case the assumption of winning the vote is crucial and the outcome would be a small but significant win over the regime. A boost in moral, an outright proof of their unpopularity.

  21. “This is a concha de mango.” Grow up, Yahoraque. Take a stance and assume its consequences. Everyone knows your position on this, even it even if you try to make it obscure to justify never being wrong. Never being wrong is not always being right. Either take a stance or keep annoying us with your irrelevant Yahoraque posts.

  22. this is so fucking retarded, a referendum to aprove an inconstitutional piece of crap made by an ilegitimate entity and trough a rigged election

    Fuck this shit. i dont even anymore, Just that people are considering either participating or not makes my head hurts. This is an abherrant absurdist piece of shit country where nothing makes any fucking sense

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