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Re Daniel's letter to Venezuela's opposition

By Aleksander Boyd

London 13.08.05 | Daniel wrote yesterday one of his best pieces so far whereby he makes a series of recommendations to the daft leaders of the opposition in Venezuela. See I find rather amusing that, for instance, Primero Justicia embarked in the political adventure pretty much at the same time that Chavez gave his coup in 1.992. Thirteen years later Hugo Chavez is a worldwide phenomenom and the very well educated indeed leaders of Primero Justicia have failed, even, to establish a nationwide presence. The main problem that we, as opposition, have got is that Chavez is a political animal and, without a shred of a doubt, he is, by far, the best politician our country has at this point in time. Politics in Venezuela are unrelated to coherent leaderhsip or successfull policy making but rather with bonding. Any individual able to reach out, establish and cement that bond will succeed in Venezuelan politics.

The opposition lacks that bonding capacity, simply because the only feature that identifies them as such is the sheer desire to see the back of Chavez and get back to where they were some years ago. Let us not mince words here, apart from a few exceptions, the opposition establishment have miserably failed in convincing us that their commitment to bring about change and a better country is genuine. For examples pointing to the contrary abound; from Julio Borges' refusal to rally the people against the electoral fraud of the referendum to the ever so prostituted argument of "we must defend our parcels", participating in 'elections' conducted by an illegal CNE and thusly obsequiously lending a veneer of democratic credibility to the chavista regime.

Daniel letter is a good starting point. He brings forth interesting proposals, alas these will not be implemmented by a deaf and disconnected opposition leadership for they 'know better' or so they think. However just for argument sake I shall say that I would not put brakes in trading with China or as some say back home "agarrando aunque sea fallo". Contrary to popular belief the Chinese were the highest bidders in the process known as "apertura petrolera" that was conducted by the much foul mouthed old PDVSA. A brief look at the sheer scale of investments going into China should be reason enough to seek inroads to the mandarin land. However Venezuela has the great advantage to be located just down the road from the global economic engine. Hence before even thinking about building Chinese-Venezuelan bridges and expanding trade with them, traffic in the US-Venezuelan one ought to be augmented a million fold. On the other hand Venezuela lacks industrial capacity to begin with, meaning that before saturation of a given segment of the US market by Venezuelan goods comes at least a century will pass. At the current speed of infrastructure and output capacity development most probably Venezuela will never be able to become a leader in any field of the US economy, let alone globally.

As Daniel rightly points out what the country needs is that all oil-generated income, down to the last penny, be spent in Venezuela and not subsidizing the continental expasion of the Chavez revolution for it needs to be stressed, he was not elected to waste our resources helping out other countries, some of which are in better economic shape.

Just imagine the impact that these set of arguments would have had, at election day, on Chavez's presidential chances back in 1.998 or in 2.000: "people of Venezuela; if you elect me I shall donate 94.000 BPD to Cuba in exchange for sport trainers and nurses posing as doctors; I shall spend more than $2 billion in an arms race for I am willing to create an armed conflict with the US, the nation the great majority of you wish to emigrate to; I shall grant sanctuary and Venezuelan citizenship to leaders of narcoterrorist movements and internationally wanted criminals; graduating officers of our honorable army will not celebrate the ending of their studies here but will be sent to Havana to pay respect to our beloved Cuban leader; I shall waste billions of your Bolivares in populist measures that will not alleviate the grave social problems that this country has; I shall abandon to their own misfortune indigenous communities, street kids and abused women; I shall cut housing spending and shall decrease the number of housing units built and given to you; PDVSA, as you know it, shall be destroyed, thousands of its workers shall be dismissed, production halved; exploration and production of Plataforma Deltana shall be given to international conglomerates such as Chevron, Total and Petrobraz, minimizing this country's participation in such ventures; unemployed and bankrupt people from around the world shall be welcomed in this country and given your monies and opportunities so that they can successfully reinsert themselves in this society; I shall exacerbate social, racial and political hatred, homogenization of our society shall be eliminated; dissenting voices shall encounter nothing but contempt, from now on any criticism towards me will be punished; private property will be a thing of the rotten past, the one we want to do away with, as such I shall create mechanism to expedite expropriations, regardless of legal ownership; if you elect me I promise you that I will take this country back 50 years; give me your vote and I shall rule you as Gomez did".

Examples and arguments aplenty, the opposition must understand, as Daniel observed, that survival comes with a dose of sacrifice. Should they fail to realise the importance of beating Chavez's destructive march this coming December it will only be them to blame for the utter anarchy and chaos that shall befall Venezuela.

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