Saturday January 5, when the chips start falling

OK, so I will be on the road tomorrow and I will not be able to follow what will happen in the all important installation of the National Assembly. Thus I figure out I should write my best possible educated guest before I take off.

What will happen tomorrow will depend on one thing only, whether Chavez can return to Venezuela at some point to take office. However the decisions are taken in large part in Cuba as it befits the head of the colonial empire that the Castros have established through the exploitation of Venezuela. That explains a lot of the trips made to Cuba by a lot of people who went there not necessarily to visit Chavez.  Brazil needs Chavez  and Venezuela as it scarecrow while it keeps building its empire quietly elsewhere. The ALBA clowns are too afraid of a post Chavez era when they may not have access anymore to political money which ensures their reelection. In short, with Chavez out there is no guarantee that the anti US crusade in Latin America can keep flourishing (as a matter of speaking if you forgive my choice of words).  Because in the end this is all that is, and anti US crusade that explains even why some government that should have known better did not condemn the Chavez regime when there was still time to do so. You know who you are.

This was not a digression if you forgive me: there is a well orchestrated plan by many in South America to ensure that a Venezuela without Chavez keeps being run by Chavez "heirs". Brazil needs its bill in Venezuela paid. The ALBA needs still financing. Cuba is of course in a survival struggle where Venezuela is it lone hope. The US could not care less, Venezuela will keep sending oil and its best professionals as cheap immigrant labor. The Chinese just want their bill paid and some raw material insured. In the lot they may even be more honest brokers than Colombia which wants Chavez out more to take over us than to create a new stable democracy.

We have no friends. Thus the decisions that will unfold as of tomorrow, decided in Havana, probably long ago. That they may not work out in the end is another discussion.

The first case is that Chavez will not come back, period. Besides the shame of dying in another country with the immense psychological consequences that this will give to the country, the death of Chavez in Havana is scheduled to support the Castro's interests. They are not long range, they are until Fidel and Raul die or find a place to hide safely. 2 years? 5? As such the objective is to ensure that the 6 year term that Chavez collected last October is "respected" and fuck the constitution if needed.

In this scenario it is important to secure a political climate that ensures an electoral victory when convenient, if indispensable. Note that the regime as been sending signs that it is not going to respect the Constitution which is strict on at least one crucial point: if January 10 Chavez does not show up the new president is the head of the National Assembly at the time.  We are thus headed toward a bi-cephalus system where Maduro will be the visible head of state while Cabello will remain at the head of the National Assembly with some kind of secret deal that insures he will hold a significant portion of the on paper powers of "president" Maduro. It is convenient for him as he can have Maduro take the nasty economical decisions that need to be taken without suffering as much of the political consequences.

In this case expect tomorrow a surprise winner for the leadership of the National Assembly, someone that within a week will be propelled to the presidency of Venezuela while Cabello having been named vice president of the Assembly will recover his chair without any trouble. Within 30 to 50 days new elections will have been held where a victory of Maduro is 99% certain as of thus typing (Capriles went on vacation, let's hope that to recover and get ready for a new campaign).

The second case is that Chavez actually may come back, if anything to hand down himself power to someone else (supporting that person openly from his death bed would do).  This becomes quite complicated because the constitutional violations that chavismo is planning in Cuba probably include some artifact to justify the return of Chavez at a later date for his swearing in. So many hypotheses are possible that there is no point speculating on those. Let's just say that if Cabello remains as the chair of the National Assembly tomorrow it is because either he knows he will hold to it for a while or because he knows that becoming president on January 10 is important for him to retain office through some form of, well, something.  That something depends on the possible date of Chavez return.  Let's not forget that whoever is sworn in to replace Chavez on January 11 will have one of the shortest presidency of Venezuelan history and then nothing else to do for quite a while.

You need to understand one thing: if chavismo falls a lot of people will be in judicial trouble. If chavismo does not fall quite yet, the economic problems coming real soon could do it in. Thus, in my very humble opinion, the Castros and chavismo have only two options: elections ASAP or no elections at all.  The opposition knows that very well and that explains why, for example, Aveledo was saying tonight that one could explore ways to postpone the searing in of Chavez......

In a few hours we will start having some serious hints.

Do you want to support more transparency in Venezuela?

Check out the Esdata site. They are doing a very valuable work. This year we will go back to the election centres and they will help us count the votes.