Something Happening?

 Maybe it’s the skeptic in me but the more I’m told there’s nothing going on the more I think there’s something happening. It’s kinda’ like the dreaded “vote of confidence” with football coaches. If a beleaguered coach hears the owner has the utmost confidence in him it usually means he’s about to be fired…which brings me to our first couple of stories. The more the Biden administration says there’s been no change regarding sanctions relief for Venezuela the more I think there’s something happening.

 TRT World reports two US investment funds have formed a joint venture with a Venezuelan firm to pursue oil and gas exploration and production in Venezuela. Does somebody know something?

 Then we have BNN Bloomberg reporting that Chevron’s President of Chevron’s Latin American Operations has been meeting with the Venezuela Oil Minister since May in an effort to give Chevron more control over operations in Venezuela which would enable a more rapid production boost if sanctions were lifted (an estimated rise of 33% in 6 months) The US already approved Chevron’s ability to negotiate the contract and Venezuela needs Chevron’s expertise and money.

 Chevron already accounts for 1/3 of Venezuela’s monthly production and foreign partners overall account for 50% of production. Part of the negotiation is sure to include how much PDVSA (Venezuela government-owned oil company) owes Chevron  from 4 joint ventures since 2019 for which Chevron has been unable to receive payment due to sanctions. It’s also worth noting that Chevron’s refinery in Pascagoula, Ms. is compatible with processing Venezuela’s heavy crude, which most refineries aren’t.

 If Chevron makes money and PDVSA makes money by paying down debt with oil shipments, which sanctions prohibit right now, and the Biden administration can appear to be doing something (even though it would have little effect on oil and gasoline prices) we may actually see a deal. I mean, why not? The Biden administration already lifted some personal sanctions, including Maduro’s wife and her nephew, as well as allowing Venezuela to ship oil to Europe, which it previously couldn’t do, in return for…well…basically nothing. They only had to agree to talk to the opposition…not do anything…just talk. Well, this could be more than just talk.

 And moving on we have Thomson Reuters reporting that the English Commercial Court has refused to grant Venezuela anti-suit relief on the grounds of “state immunity”. In short, all the various lawsuits against Chavismo for all their unjust and illegal activities can proceed.

 And we have Reuters telling us that Venezuelan authorities frequently bill Colombian oil companies for oil spills from a pipeline that runs adjacent to the Colombia/Venezuela border. Many are caused by criminal gangs stealing crude to make rudimentary gasoline used in cocaine production…Who knew?

 Then we have TASS (again) telling us that the Venezuela Foreign Minister says, “Russia is on the front line of efforts to create a ‘new world order’ and resist the expansion of NATO…in the name of humanity…that respects the right of self-determination.” Or is it the “old world order” of the USSR from the Cold War days? …And what about Ukraine’s right to self-determination? Oh, that’s right, he says the government in Kiev is neo-Nazi and is pursuing genocide, which makes Russia’s “special military operation” (invasion) permissible.

 And we have The Global American with the headline, “Things Are Never So Bad That They Can’t Get Worse”. The article is a review of a book by William Neuman. The title describes the general feeling of Venezuela’s population. The book describes Maduro’s governing style, week to week, solely focused on preserving power, so even after over 8 years in power he hasn’t solved any problems. He’s simply accomplished his goal…he’s still there.

 Then we have Caracas Chronicles telling us that a Chavista Deputy (Representative) in Maduro’s National Assembly admitted that the regime blocks digital media because of the information they publish and said that the fact that someone has the power to communicate with the population doesn’t mean you’re entitled to say whatever you want.He compared the regime’s media blocking to European regulations against fake news and hate speech. (Remember, we warned you about anti-hate laws…it’s in the eye of the beholder)

 And we have Norwegian consulting firm, Rystad Energy, excluding Venezuela from it’s list of countries with the highest oil reserves because the time and money necessary forbid Venezuela from being a candidate to supply the rest of the world. Hear! Hear! Finally someone has just come out and said it! (Except for us, of course, who’ve been saying it for a long time) Maybe the term “proven oil reserves” should be revised into two parts…proven that it’s there and proven they can get it out of the ground. Note; It’s just like Maduro’s fraudulent cryptocurrency, “El Petro”, supposedly backed by a barrel of oil per coin. The problem is that the oil designated to back, “El Petro”, is in an undeveloped oilfield! When you purchase, “El Petro”, does it come with a drill, a shovel, and a pump?

 Then we have political party, Bandera Roja, saying that SEBIN (part of Maduro’s “three-headed monster” of state security services) officers detained political leader, Alcides Bracho, as they did his friend, president of the Tribunal Workers Guild, Emilio Negrin. Several NGOs are demanding their release.

 And we have former Ombudswoman, Gabriella Ramirez, saying Carlos Lanz’s wife and daughters, Tito Viloria and his wife and daughters, and two workers on their farm have been arrested. It’s unconfirmed but something’s going on.

 And lawyer, Tamara Suju, says prisoners at DGCIM (another part of Maduro’s “three-headed monster” of state security services) headquarters have been exposed to carbon monoxide and gas when they were remodeling cells without ventilation after the attempted suicide of American political prisoner, Matthew Heath.

 Then we have the director of CICPC, the “scientific police” (whatever that means) saying they’re still (?) investigating the atrocious crime against indigenous leader, Virgilio Trujillo, who was murdered June,30th. He says that drug traffickers and paramilitary officers that intend to take over the country are allegedly involved. Usually we’re told that authorities can’t comment regarding an ongoing investigation but it seems we’re all set with a scapegoat.

 And we have leftist (Marxist) Colombian President-elect, Gustavo Petro, saying he doesn’t think it would be prudent to invite Maduro to his swearing in ceremony. (Whatever happened to one Marxist, Petro, cozying up to another Marxist, Maduro?) He added that Venezuela’s migration crisis is caused by hunger and a lack of democracy.

 Then we have Mehr News with…”Iranian Made Drones Displayed In Venezuela War Games”…Great!

 And we have Argus Media reporting that Indian buyers of Venezuela coke (not covered by sanctions) question whether buying Venezuela coke is worth the risk, even at heavily discounted prices, due to disruptions at Venezuela coke ports causing delays that can last months. India seems a little slow on the uptake. European buyers already know this.

 Then we have Newsweek with new video-drone footage showing hundreds of Venezuelan and Cuban migrants crossing the US southern border illegally into Texas. Is this any surprise to anybody?

 And we have CL Tampa telling us that Florida gubernatorial candidates are calling on Joe Biden to extend TPS (temporary protected status) for Venezuelans fleeing the Maduro regime (21st Century Bolivarian Socialism). It’s set to expire soon and they say nothing has changed since TPS was issued by Biden over a year ago.

 More tomorrow….

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