"As if Kafka..."

An excerpt from the latest installment of Armando Duran's weekly column in El Nacional, "Contra esto y aquello" (Monday, Nov 3):

"[...] What has been unusual about Chavez's regime is its capacity to play two sides simultaneously. That of a dictatorship and that of a democracy. With a single and obsessive purpose: to stay in Miraflores until the day of the flood. To accomplish this, his management as President has become unbearably authoritarian with each day, always bordering the elastic limits of legality, but without breaking the constitutional thread.

This is why his actions, no matter how devious they might be, have developed within a presumably democratic field. Without ever allowing the habitual impunity of his behavior to create an irreversible break. The violent expulsion of families from Los Semerucos, the political prisoners in the state of Tachira, the harassment of which Globovision has been a victim, for example, are obscene attacks on liberty and democracy.

All of these actions, however, have been carried out under the protection of a scatological justice administered by judges that respond exclusively to the political interests of Miraflores. As if Kafka, brought to life again by the accomplishments and grace of the Bolivarian revolution, were strolling now, calmly and without anxieties, through the crippled political geography of Venezuela, while Chavez, step by step, makes us submit to the bureaucratic nightmare of his Process.

Through the halls of this labyrinth, Chavez and his advisors have managed to cover up the antidemocratic efforts of the government with a very thin, but sufficient, layer of legality. It matters very little that the clearly totalitarian nature of his intentions is recognized everywhere.

In official terms, what matters for the National Armed Forces and for the international community is the apparently democratic aspect of the Venezuelan government. As long as the government does not flagrantly violate the artificial mechanics of that appearance, Chavez is safe. Something that, as the government's most recent reactions allow us to suspect, can change in an instant if, at the hour of facing the reality of El Reafirmazo [November 28], Chavez decides to transgress constitutional norms and to attack the rights of Venezuelan citizens. [...]"


Also from Monday's El Nacional, Ibsen Martinez comments on the propaganda documentary "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised":

"[...] A recently-released Irish documentary film takes as its subject the convoluted events of April 11, 2002 and the days that followed. It uses the same title as the song by [Gil] Scott-Heron. It is directed by Kim Bartley and Donnacha O'Briain, it has received international awards, and it drives certain Chavistas, of the type who like to refer to themselves as 'illustrious', crazy, l-i-t-e-r-a-l-l-y crazy with moral validation.

More information about the documentary can be found at www.chavezthefilm.com. I've seen it a couple times and, frankly, I find it to be Eurocentric, Rousseauian, naive, sentimental, and fallaciously impartial. [...]"