W T F U ! Contd.

 We’ll head Down The Rabbit Hole in just a bit but first we continue with yesterday’s piece from our friends at Caracas Chronicles which we’ve called “W T F U !”…

…Now for the good news, and this caught us totally by surprise. According to a recent survey by More Consulting, 36.8% of opposition and independent voters in Venezuela would vote for…wait for it…Maria Corina Machado! (This is the part where we remind you that MCM is, and has been from day one, our personal favorite to challenge Nicolas Maduro in 2024)

 Here are her strengths and weaknesses :

 Strengths : Not banned from running for (or holding) public office

 Coherent, hard line profile

 Free of blame : 1/ On the failures that the general public places on the opposition

                            2/ Untouched by the “interim government’s” scandals and failures

 Popular with the diaspora (The 7.1 million migrants and counting represent 20% of the country’s total population)

 Good communication skills, both on social media and in interviews, able to reach young voters

 Weaknesses : Little party organizational power

 Little alliance capacity, as people told More Consulting, they wouldn’t vote for her because the big parties wouldn’t support her (Sounds to me like more of a positive than a negative)

 She is the anti- Chavez, which may sound like a good thing but down the line may prove to be problematic when trying to reach out to Chavistas

 So what does this tell us? Well, I would like to say this to the people of Venezuela, to the international community at-large, to the citizens of the USA, and anyone else that’s listening…W T F U ! (Wake The F_ _k Up !)

 This is the best chance you’re going to get, an opportunity to support a candidate that can win versus Nicolas Maduro if, and it’s a big “if”, the presidential election is even remotely free or fair.

 The Venezuelan people need to rally behind Maria Corina Machado, put aside whatever reservations they may have, and do whatever they can to elect her and rid themselves of the scourge that is Nicolas Maduro and 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism.

 The entire international community needs to support MCM which will make it easier for the Venezuelan people to coalesce behind her (I know, the whole Juan Guaido, “interim government” thing didn’t work out but this woman is not Juan Guaido). She remains the only one on the Venezuelan political scene that has stayed true to her principles and spoken the truth, the hard reality, from day one, and that is that there is no future for Venezuela until Nicolas Maduro and the Chavistas are gone.

 The people and government of the US need to support Ms Machado for all the same reasons, if they can put aside their pro- socialist leanings and stop trying to find an easier, softer way when it comes to Nicolas Maduro and the Chavistas.

 Note : The Democratic Socialists of America (AOC’s group) continues to support Nicolas Maduro, as recently as last fall)

 There is no “normalizing of relations” with these guys. They have proven time and again that if they are allowed to remain in power they will continue to do what they’ve been doing for a long time, enriching themselves while they destroy the lives of the Venezuelan people. The time is now…Maria!…Maria!…Maria!

 Now, let’s go Down The Rabbit Hole…

 Chapter 2 continued…

 …Unfortunately for the Venezuelans the situation received very little international media coverage. At the same time this was happening the Russians annexed Crimea so the focus of the world was elsewhere, thousands of miles away and nobody really noticed the Maduro regime killing 40 innocent protesters, among other atrocities.

 Over the next year or so stories surfaced about the lack of food and medicine in Venezuela as well as the Human Rights violations so, then president, Obama initiated the first sanctions. They targeted individuals and were meant to get Maduro to address the situation. In keeping with his MO, Maduro denied the humanitarian crisis, blamed the dead and wounded in the demonstrations on right-wing conspiracy and US imperialism, and did nothing for the Venezuelan people.

 When Donald Trump became president he continued the sanctions and added more and more individuals over a two-year period in an attempt to get Maduro to change course and care for his people. The result was the same, more bluster and denial, and Venezuelans continued to die.

 In 2017 tensions boiled over and another round of mass protests erupted.The repression ratcheted up and 140 protesters were killed, more than 1,500 wounded, and thousands arrested. This time the world was distracted by North Korea firing missiles so, once again, Venezuela was a secondary issue. Timing, as they say, is everything. Conditions stayed the same for the Venezuelan people. The only change in behavior for the government was they finally defaulted on some of their bonds (for the first time in the history of Venezuela) as the government was, for all intents and purposes, going broke. Due to oil revenues there was cash flow. The were also a number of countries and international organizations offering help for the Venezuelan people. Maduro still refused to help his people, just more denial and bluster.

 With individual sanctions having no effect on Maduro’s behavior the US, sensing the time was right due to the selective bond defaults, sanctioned the bond market so the government couldn’t issue new debt and more individuals were sanctioned. The cash flow was still there as were the offers of humanitarian aid but Maduro continued to ignore the needs of his people.

 The outflow of migrants which had been steadily increasing become a tsunami, and for good reason. The situation continued to deteriorate for the Venezuelan people. In typical Venezuelan humor they called it “The Maduro Diet” with the average Venezuela losing about 20 pounds. Over the next year and a half 3 million Venezuelans would leave.

 More tomorrow….

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