Tuesday, July 25, 2006
After much rumor, Benjamían Rausseo better known as El Conde del Guacharo is the latest candidate seeking the presidential seat.
I highly recommend seeing his television appearance and question and answer forum, I apologize to the language impaired.
It has long been said that what Venezuela needs is a non-politician, someone fresh and not tied to the past who can connect with all Venezuelans. Here are a few things that I think work in his favor:
1. He has no ties to political parties or groups and is viewed as an outsider and political underdog.
2. He is best known as a comedian, like sports humor is a great asset when wanting to connect and unite the population. His often simple but very humorous language will defiantly connect with the people, more so than any other opposition candidate and even Chavez.
3. He is educated and is a successful business man.
4. Unlike the other candidates he is the first to meet in a televised setting and take questions directly from the audience, all were university students.
So while his message for the future of Venezuela may not be much different than the rest of the opposition candidates his independent/underdog status, quick wits, humor, and business savviness may in the end win over most Venezuelans.
Posted by KA at 5:47 PM
Monday, July 24, 2006
It's stories like the EADS contract to sell military planes to Hugo Chavez with the indirect/direct (?) aid from Republicans, in this case Senator Richard Shelby (R-Alabama), that just make you want go "what the hell!".
If only the democrats could jump on this story and kill to birds with one stone:
- Make further military build up in Latin America in particular Venezuela more difficult. As we all know military build up in Latin America has never brought good things.
- Expose the hypocrisy of the republican party in claiming they are tough on national security, when in this case seem to be compromising it.
read more about this by clicking here and here
Posted by KA at 12:35 PM
Monday, July 17, 2006
Having followed the bolivarian revolution over the years I learned to expect some of the most bazaar stories and to expect anything from the Venezuelan government from fake polling agencies (North American Opinion Research), an efficient blacklist (Maisanta), to the bazaar killing of the special prosecutor Daniel Anderson, and many others. However some of the strangest stories come out of the world class and envy of the world voting system that that is used in Venezuela including its voter registry compiled by the CNE.
One of the first revalations of the mess that has become the voter registry was the discovery of the Gonzalez family 2,002 of them to be exact, all born on the same day, 95% of them registered in at the same voting table, and 562 of them with their ID number one more than the previous one, needless to say this is statistically impossible. Since then their are almost weekly revelations of more mere coincidences in the registry. Miguel discusses the more than 8 million voters illegally registered to vote that was revealed by the political party COPEI after obtaining a leaked copy of the Electoral Registry. Including 2.1 million people that live in the same house - that must be one big house! Below are a few other interesting things that I have read about or have personally come across in the registry:
1. Someone with the first name Superman - seems a little strange to me
2. A person with the address of "The Manzano hill, kilometer 7 river Claro, in front of the HidroLara water treatment plant". First of all this is not a legal address, second it shows how well the revolution has treated the homeless.
3. People with unpronounceable name such as: Nnamchi Onuchukwuokoh more can be seen here. My only guess is that these could be African names (a simple google search seems to suggest it is a Nigerian name), but where in the hell did so many Africans come from all of a sudden? My only guess is that they are Nigerians brought to Venezuela to work in the oil fields after PDVSA was purged of the non-revolutionaries (BTW, Nigeria big oil producer and member of OPEC). I personally have read reports of foreigners brought to Venezuela and immediately given a national ID card and I assume they were also registered to vote, this is supported by the sequental increase in ID numbers. Both of which are illegal since these individuals are not Venezuelan citizens.
4. God knows how old this person is with an ID number of 123
So now I'm going to go out on a limb and sound like a conspiracy theorist or nut and propose a question/comment about the Dec. 4th elections. Most of us are aware that the voting machines are easily manipulated, compounded by the fact that no one except the Chavez folks are allowed in the voting tally room, and the 8 million voters whose existence is questionable at best. So what are the chances of the opposition of getting a fair vote if they go to the polls? Well none unless they get the ballot boxes open and count each vote, something the Chavez government will not allow as they place the military at the voting booths. But what if the opposition abstains from voting, well it seems Chavez has two options:
1. Introduce a vote to allow him to stay until 2031 as president this will a) hopefully turn out more voters and b) allow him to stay until 2031-this is guarenteed to work.
2. (note this may sound totally crazy) - Chavez has been saying he will get 10 million votes so how can he guarantee this? by filling the voter registry of course! COPEI revealed 8 million questionable voters add this to the ~2.5 million that are sure to vote for Chavez (~15-20% of voters), exhibited during the national Assembly vote in Dec 2005, and you get 10 - 11 million votes. Since the voting machines are electronic not audited by impartial or independent people and the voteing registries are kept under government control the 8 million votes can show up at a press of a button.
In short the only way to get a fair vote and clean elections is by having the boxes opened and each vote counted. Something Chavez won't allow!
Posted by KA at 12:06 PM
Friday, July 14, 2006
Again the Miami Herald has revealed some very interesting news on the cheap oil give away to the poor in the US and Europe. At least the oil for the poor has been confirmed as a propaganda tool, as if that was ever in dispute. Don't get me wrong I'm happy for the poor but at least call the subsidy for what it is, a propaganda tool.
Posted by KA at 9:44 PM
Wednesday, July 05, 2006
Well I'm sort of at a loss for words for the recent television appearance of Cindy Sheehan on MSNBC where she said she would "rather live under Hugo Chavez than under Bush" and that "Chavez has been elected overwhelmingly 8 times", which is false he was elected 2 times 1998 and 2000. I will say this, the woman interviewing Sheehan really laid it into her.
To see her appearance click here.
What upsets me the most about people like Sheehan is that I do agree with them up to a point on the war in Iraq and their feelings about Bush. However, they seem to be so willing to cozy up to people like Chavez, why? Well the only explanation I can come up with is that they are so blinded by their hatred for Bush that they are willing to accept anything. Oh ya and the "free money and gifts" just sweeten the deal.
I only wish the likes of Sheehan would practice what they preach, I bet their opinions about living under Chavez would change.
Posted by KA at 8:09 PM
After a very busy, yet productive, month of work I thought I would post something light.
If you didn't already know Venezuelan chocolate is the best in the world, in my unbiased opinion :) . For to long Venezuela has not exported it's delicious chocolate but instead sold the cacao to European based chocolate companies for them to receive the credit. Well no more! Venezuelan companies and individuals have now taken the famous bean to the people.
Probably the most widely known chocolate is El Rey which you can buy through various outlets in the US or over the internet. In addition you can also buy bonbons, dipped fruits, etc. from Chuao Chocolatierbased near San Diego and owned by a Venezuelan who uses chocolate El Rey, yum I'm salivating as I write this!
For those of you visiting Venezuela you can also experience the life of a cacao farmer by staying on a cacao hacienda.
FYI, the higher % cacao the better!
Posted by KA at 2:21 PM