Se compra oro viejo / Silvio Orta Cabrera

We Buy Old Gold

Hardcore Chavismo is en route to deciding in favor of Terror, just like that, with a capital T, no matter how Falangist it might sound. The various actions and behavior – cult of personality, militarism, control over education and culture… – which reveal the fracturing of the attempt to establish a socialist model different from ones that have failed, are supplemented by actions and behavior that concretize the menace of terrorism.

The victory on December 2, 2007 rejected the consititutional changes aimed at accelerating by electoral means the formerly-named “process,” later baptized by the German Heinz Dieterich, Marxist consultant to the government, as “21st Century Socialism,” a pompous name whose launch at the beginning of the century sought to synchronize socialism with the present, to separate it from the totalitarian past and give it a futurist makeover. It reminded me of those businesses, often owned by Colombians, that announce: “We Buy Old Gold.”

But beyond the rejection, December 2nd inflicted upon Chávez his first electoral defeat, as a consequence of the mistake of associating his image with the results at the urns. And that’s where the majority vote buried the myth of the unbeatable Chávez. Even worse, once the character lost what little sense of discretion adorns him, he threw the dice betting on the even worse misstep of associating his own existence with the defeat of the regional candidates in the upcoming elections on November 23rd. Such a paranoid error, which could submerge Venezuela in a war – Chávez dixit – is synthesized by his bark of “They’re coming for me!” with which he hopes to conjure the spirits and elevate the moral of his crestfallen and diminished faithful.

If even in its weakness the opposition’s unity contributed to the victory of December 2nd, Chávez and hardcore Chavismo added another element, by dividing the pro-government ranks with the dogmatic and personalist mania of the stillborn single party. That stubbornness was influenced by the military harassment copied from the dictatorial Soviet communist formula, the pliability of some ex-communists (what a shame about Jesús Sanoja, Roberto Hernández!) and the jingle of the neo-adulators that prohibits confronting the Leader, their “Daddy.” What shamelessness!

Since December 2nd, Chávez spends his days and nights exploring the feasibility of a defeat and he openly prepares himself alongside hardcore Chavistas. This is demonstrated by the symbiotic acknowledgement of the FARC, the return to the use of violence against any opposition, the siege against Globovisión, the sergeant’s scolding of Últimas Noticias [pro-government newspaper] and the bloody terrorist act against Fedecámaras perpetrated by one of those red Falangists praised by miss Lina Ron [pro-government activist]. “Tell me who your friends are!”

These are signs of hardcore Chavismo’s possible descent into the inferno of terror. Nothing would prevent this possibility if fear were to impel a step back by plural Venezuela, that larger population which includes the Chavista majority that is neither suicidal, nor fatuous, nor corrupt and is aware that no one escapes from terror. But if that entire Venezuela, civilian and military, historically opposed to cowardly terrorism, joins together solidly and makes an effort to hand Chávez another overwhelming defeat, the crime of treason will remain an abortion.

{ Silvio Orta Cabrera, Tal Cual, 5 March 2008 }

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