The Chavez revolution does not even have the people to mind the store.

November 18, 2010

Many years ago (about 30), when I worked for the Government, I was supposed to get reimbursed for US$ 120 for some books I had purchased. Except that there was an error and I got one check, and one week later a second check arrived. I went to the cashiers office, where I worked, to return it and the lady (had to be a trusted employee given her position) told me literally: “Why don’t you keep it, if you don’t, somebody else will”

Having recently come back from studying abroad at the time, I was absolutely appalled by the response and it is still one of the most memorable memories I have of the culture shock I had upon returning to my own country. In fact, there was no procedure for returning money, apparently nobody ever did that, so I had to talk to a big shot in the administration of the institute in order to at least, have someone accept the returned check and give me a receipt for it.

It was the first of many lessons on how Venezuelans feel that somehow money is there to be grabbed, not be earned, and if somebody has money, it is likely to be because they got there first to grab it.

Which leads to the large quantity of graft and corruption levels we have. Unless somebody is watching, workers will try to grab what they think is there and there seems to be no moral dilemma in doing it. The only way to stop this is better education and better oversight. (And then some more education) Unless both are in place, people will not learn to separate what is ethical and what is unethical and in any case you need somebody to be watching, as the “honor” system simply does not work. Somebody has to be minding the store.

This has been the case for decades, which is what taught me that the less Government we have, the better. Not only is is difficult to be watching over everyone, but Venezuela simply did not have the people to run all of the things the Government wanted to run.

And then came Chavez promoting his so called XXIst. Century Revolution, which in order to run more things, needs more people. But the revolution also removed checks and balances, which allowed people to run amok, taking personal advantage of their positions and leading to the perverse misuse of Government funds as in the case of Maletagate, Pudreval and so may others.

In some sense, the basic precepts of Chavez revolution seem to be designed for a society whose citizens are different than the common citizen of Venezuela. Over the years, whether in the public sector or the private sector I have seen this pattern repeat, which is why I simply gasp at Chavez’ beliefs that people will run something honestly and efficiently just because they are good citizens. Remove the cops enforcing stop signs in the US and people will start running through them. Unfortunately it’s human nature.

These ruminations come to mind, because in the last two days we have had two scandals involving corruption in two of the most symbolic programs started by Hugo Chavez: Mercal and his Socialist Arepera.

The Arepera Socialista is the best case study, as it was announced with pomposity by Hugo Chavez, he promised he would build hundreds of them, but you can count them all with one hand. The project served its purpose, it has been forgotten. These areperas, are supposed to be a fairly symbolic project, because it is subsidized and attempts to sell a popular staple, competing with the “capitalist” establishments that supposedly rip people off.

Except that six of the workers of the arepera, were caught with their hand in the till, stealing money at the end of every day from the cash register, which was recorded in videos and they were arrested yesterday. Perhaps the most amazing thing is that it was not one or two workers but six. I have no idea how many people work there, but it seems to be a large number of unethical workers for a project so emblematic that I am sure would only hire “Rojo, rojito” workers who are rank and file members of Chavez’ PSUV.

The next day, a very similar event took place, when the human resources manager of Mercal, another emblematic project of the revolution and six workers were detained for running a parallel payroll to that of the Mision Mercal, which is supposed to sell cheap food to the people.  Besides this, they were handing out food stamps to people who do not work for Mercal and even travel expenses.

Unfortunately, what this shows is that the Chavez revolution can’t find the people to run or mind the store. From way at the bottom, arepera employees, or the bosses at Pudreval, Mercal and PDVSA, revolutionary ideals are set aside whenever money is left out in the open and without anybody watching. And the more the revolution wants, the harder it will become to control. Corruption is even a problem among the cops that are supposed to investigate and control such thievery and unethical behavior.

None of this is rocket  science. This was predicted by many as Chavez began his wildly uncontrolled expansion of the state in which more and more of the private sector is expropriated by the Government or new institutions are set up to compete with it. To make matters even worse, the Government does little to reward hard work and even loyalty. In the last efw days, we have seen protests by both Barrio Adentro and Mercal workers. They have not only not received any salary increases, inflation is up 25% so far in 2010, but they are owed benefits and some of the promised supplies to adequately do their jobs.

While at least in the two cases mentioned above, the police at least caught those involved in the rackets, I am sure that there are hundreds of others that go unnoticed every day. When Government officials are given such a free reign and nobody minds the store, such shenaginans will not only continue to continue, but will likely increase as the Government extends its reach way beyond its most basic capabilities.

53 Responses to “The Chavez revolution does not even have the people to mind the store.”

  1. metodex Says:

    It does not surprise me since most of the people working for the government are just regular common folk.They “support” the government in order to not lose the job,wich may or may not have good benefits and pay.

    It all comes down to money,and venezuelans(me included) are hungry for it.
    Those who support families are already struggling since the checks are not enough for the expenses,and those that have recently graduated have a blurry future,(unless they get a nice job using “palanca”, wether in the government or not).I can’t even imagine whats it like for people that can’t go to college.Since there’s no chance to make something of yourself here.

    So the revolution uses a nice start on all projects,then they all go down.
    More promises,and then some more promises,even the workers are fed up with it.
    at the end of the line,people don’t want to do anything with a revolution, or socialist values.People just want to get paid well,for their work.And dont get robbed every 15th and 30th.
    However,what you said is trie MO,about the human nature.
    But tell me,how is this human nature going on in,say,Sweden or other European countries,where it SEEMS(im not sure,tell me) that people are much more educated in ethic and values.

    I just hope they keep messing up things.As these things go on,2012 seems much brighter.Worry not.Just 2 more years


  2. You need lots of education and enforcement, after a while you need less enforcement, but as my grabdfather used to say you need to instilll fear of God in people whether God is religion or Government.

  3. CarlosElio Says:

    There is in all of us a tendency to misbehaving. During black outs in New York a few years ago, crime against property and people peaked sharply. Not everybody became a bandit, but lots of people did. The moral of the story is that when no one is watching, you tend to steal and abuse other people since you won’t be discovered. During hurricane Katrina, we saw photos of people carrying TVs on their backs from stores that were left unattended. During carnival, wearing a mask, people become more aggressive and prone to dabble adventure.
    With a government suffering from political elephantiasis, and the bulk of the obese government devoted to the exaltation of the buffoon president or the persecution of those who oppose his government, no one in authority is paying any attention. It is like a national black out–on top of the electrical failures–in the middle of a perpetual carnival. No wonder even hard core chavistas go to the cookie jar shamelessly.

  4. Bobthebuilder Says:

    When you (the employer or state) break your promise to your workforce of improved living conditions, how do you expect employees not to end up stealing from you?

  5. albionoldboy Says:

    When Chavez ran the canteen at Fort Tuina he promptly bankrupted it after a few months, this was a business with no competition, no rent to pay, a captive market and well paid customers.

    Why should any business he controls as head of state fair better?
    Chavez knows socialism doesn’t work, for him as a wannabe dictator
    he has two roads, the Pérez Jiménez route, build roads, bridges, in short develop the country, or the Fidel Castro way, and have the country like some African Dictatorship.

    But who lasted longer? Fidel of course, and that my dear friends is all Hugo Chavez wants, to be president for life, the way Hugo see it better to rule in hell than serve in heaven, so is it any wonder Venezuela is becoming a living hell?

  6. captainccs Says:

    Lo dijo Cantinflas: “Diós mio, no de des. Ponme donde haiga.”

    Cantinflas said it: “Dear God, don’t give me. Put me where there is.”

  7. Kepler Says:

    There is corruption everywhere, but there are also important differences. It is not just a matter of control. And the ultrametropolis New York is not the best example for the US, I’d say.

    I have lost my wallet twice in my life and both times happened in Flanders. In one occassion I left it on a phone in a cabin and I found it there with all the money 30 minutes later and some people having used the phone. On the other occassion I dropped it in the seat of a cinema and when I went back the day after the people at the cinema’s entry had the wallet with all the money (and I had very stupidly drawn over 100 euros the day before).

    Things are changing here and in many areas of Europe but it has to do to a big extent with immigrants: from Latin America, from Africa, from Eastern Europe.
    It’s not xenophobia. I am a Latin American myself. I don’t steal but I know how a huge amount of our compatriots have been educated.
    Even in L.A. there are huge differences. Look at Chile (and yes, there were riots during the hearthquake).

  8. Kepler Says:

    OT, can someone tell me the price in Venezuela of a litre of bottle of Bushmills or 3/4 litre?
    Or any other very good whisky?

    Thanks!

  9. A_Antonio Says:

    in albionoldboy’s line of axamples:

    Somebody I knew, and make military services with Chavez told me that Chavez supervised, at the time, the construction of houses for military. The house of the general was very fine, but the houses for the plain soldiers show cracks everywhere.

    Is this the man to solve the house problem?

  10. Vitor Says:

    Strange, I’m an atheist libertarian and I don’t feel I need either God or the goverment to “give me the incentives” to not steal. ;)

  11. jsb Says:

    I forget which of you Venezuela bloggers had a picture of an employee making change at one of the socialist arepa stores. But it struck me at the time as odd because it wasn’t a cash register, but a lock box.

  12. jsb Says:

    Here it is, from Setty’s blog. (http://settysoutham.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/dscn5841.jpg) It’d be a good picture for this post!

    …originally from here (http://settysoutham.wordpress.com/2010/04/25/mmm-arepas/).

  13. Roy Says:

    Vitor,

    The most scrupulously honest person will steal, when put into a situation in which:

    1) There is virtually no chance of being caught and punished,

    and

    2) Virtually everyone is doing it.

    At some point, when the majority of persons are engaging in this behavior, it begins to appear simply naive and stupid not to do the same.

    Furthermore, the more faceless the victim is, the easier it is to justify. For example, it is difficult to steal from your neighbor, an individual whom you know. However, it may be easier to steal from a company, which has no human face. And it is even easier to steal from the government, since it is faceless and one can easily justify it by simply assuming that since you are stealing from all the people, and you are one of the people too, it is not really stealing after all.

    If you live in Venezuela, I will bet you that in some small manner, at least, you are already stealing from the government, by virtue of gaming the system.

  14. Steve Says:

    CarlosElio, it’s true that many people would commit crimes if they were unpunished, but not everyone and not all the time. During the San Francisco earthquake of 1989 there was little looting.

  15. Bloody Mary Says:

    albionoldboy:

    Is the Fuerte Tiuna’s Cantina a fact? I mean, Does it really happened? Is easy to imagine that, but I would like you to clarify if it is an illustrative and graphic fantastic example or not.

    Regarding the New York example, is a very illustrative one, even more when you compare that event with the blackout that happened just seven year ago, when the night passed without any recorded violent event….

    The difference could be found in years of harder police control (implemented by Mr. Giuliani) that produced more “social conciseness”, so more police/government control gives not just coercion but stick a moral standard among the population…….. off course this conciseness is not going to last without further police oversight and control.

    Applying these ideas to Venezuela we have to conclude that we are basically (and will be for the next decades) fucked …

    Thanks,

  16. jeffry house Says:

    But public employees CAN make a difference, if the policies are right:

    Today, an important business group awarded Venezuela the ranking of 172nd best country to do business in, worldwide:

    It is worse in Burundi and Chad, though.

    http://www.doingbusiness.org/rankings

  17. Eric Says:

    Miguel, your story reminds me of what happened to a friend of mine’s father, a cabinet member, some 35 years ago during CAP 1. This man had faithfaully discharged his duties in a year-long round of international negotiations and was in the president’s office rindiendo cuentas. One hundred thousand dollars remained in the public account which had been established to support the negotiations process, and my friend’s father had a check ready for that amount to return it to the government. CAP reportedly told him that since he’d done such a great job he should keep it and leave it at that. The gentleman in question was horrified, and left the check on CAP’s desk and departed.

    The fish stinks from the head.

  18. Kepler Says:

    Un día el papa Juan Pablo II le dijo a la prensa que si pudiera decidir dónde morir, le gustaría morir en Venezuela. Los periodistas, asombrados, le preguntaron porqué Venezuela. Juan Pablo los miró sorprendido y dijo:
    es que quiero morir como Jesucristo, con un ladro a la izquierda y uno a la derecha.

  19. liz Says:

    Many years ago -probably 20- I had an assistant at the office. She would skip work during the morning twice a month. She was in a parallel payroll at Alcaldia de Caracas. She went on payday to collect her check.

    She explained that she had worked there before, but even after quitting or being terminated -don’t remember which- the checks kept coming… so, she kept cashing them!

    Miguel is right. We need education, values, ethic, some kind of faith and more education!

  20. Jeffrey W Says:

    I think that kind of casual corruption needs more than education.
    That is almost something that is so basic that it has to taught at a family level.
    Living in South Texas where the Latin and Anglo culture start to mix is a daily display of the differences.
    One of my favorite references goes back to a sign that was on the main Bridge coming into San Antonio in the 19th century.
    It had a warning in 3 different languages and for 3 very different cultures.
    The first was a warning in German that crossing the bridge without paying the toll was Verboten. Thats all that had to be said.
    In English it said that crossing the bridge without paying the toll would result in a fine.
    Finally in Spanish it said Cross the bridge without paying the toll and FEAR the law.

  21. mick Says:

    Wouldn’t it be hilarious if someone could post a picture of the signs in the subway that say pictures no pictures. I didn’t realize images of the subway were state secrets. Venezuela is probably the only place in the world where that is true.

    Of course someone in another country would have to publish it on the web.

  22. Kepler Says:

    Perhaps that’s a good idea: to publish pictures of undergrounds all over the world and show that to Chavistas.

  23. A_Antonio Says:

    Prepare your stomachs, the regime is showing World wide its documental: “De Bolivar a Chávez” (From Bolivar to Chávez). :-(

    …and this is all I have to say.

  24. marc in calgary Says:

    Kepler y mick, here:
    http://metroart-subways.blogspot.com/

    *what I noticed first in these photos was the total lack of debris on the floors.

  25. Lim Says:

    I think it is encouraging to see that the people most trusted by Chavez inc. to run their flagship projects don’t really believe that the projects are any good. With such low morale these people will not die with their boots on when Chavez is finally kicked out. There won’t be much fighting and minimal bloodshed. Just watch out for Lina Ron.

  26. amieres Says:

    I don’t believe Chavez is naive at all about human nature. If someone knows the venezuelans is Chavez.

    I remember when he started his government he apointed one of the original swearers of the oath under the Saman de Guere, Cmd. Urdaneta to the DISIP. Urdaneta quickly started collecting ‘expedientes’ on corruption here and there and sending them directly to Chavez who would ignore them. So Urdaneta started putting presure on him to do something about it and they were having heated discussions that ended up with Urdaneta out of the government. Chavez has been perfectly aware of corruption since day one, he promotes it, he’s not trying to keep people honest but loyal. It’s a bozal the arepa with a twist.

    This recent crack down after his arrival from a long strategy session in Cuba, is just part of an effort to wash his face after so many public scandals (Pudreval, Cubillas, Makled). Even Russian is talking about how nobody is untouchable. This is the time of ‘Chinitos de Recadi’, ‘Cabezas de Turco’, scape goats.

  27. firepigette Says:

    What Roy said :

    “The most scrupulously honest person will steal, when put into a situation in which:
    1) There is virtually no chance of being caught and punished,
    2) Virtually everyone is doing it.”

    Is completely and totally untrue.Many people will but their will be a significant number of people who will not.

    the 3 basic levels of human development:

    1. the lowest level are people who are sick or underdeveloped and will not be amenable to morality

    2. the second level of people who are basically tied to the majority and conventional wisdom and they will follow what everyone else does.

    3. the more developed people who are highly independent and will act according to their own values and not what the majority of people do or think.These are the only really trustworthy member of society.

    Not everybody is on the same level of moral development and independence in thinking and being.


  28. fire: I agree with you in that the number of people is limited, but I would like to add an angle that is responsible in part for the moral deterioration of Venezuela: Need.

    With inflation at 30% year after year and salaries not keeping up, people are having a really hard time making ends meet. They are also discouraged. They work hard, spend two hours getting to work, two hours back, they do a good job, they are loyal and in the end they have less in their pockets. If you are a Government worker you are treated like s… The Chavez administration has reduced benefits and forces you to march and wear red shirts. Unions are now ignored or powerless and nobody defends your rights. You are discouraged, your standard of living is sinking and then you see a chance to steal, or charge a commission to “ease” a process and that way you can earn some extra money. You do it. You start small, just because you can’t make your rent, or put food on the plate like you used to, the kid needs clothes, or books. It’s tragic.

  29. torres Says:

    Miguel Octavio, there is another option besides fighting or running from a man with a stick, and that’s getting rid of the stick. In this case, there’s a centralization of money that makes this stealing almost a corrupt lottery. The key is to decentralize the money so that everyone gets their fair share of it, and then the only way to amass it back is to work for it. There wouldn’t be a pot of gold to steal, anymore. Cash distribution is much more than just eliminating poverty. It’s turning this upside down nation, right side up. It’s eliminating the petro-state.


  30. Oh, I am all for the Petrobras/Petronas model, state run, but public

  31. Roger Says:

    The Little Death they call it. But, how else do you survive in a city that costs as much to live in as New York with income a 10-20% of the average American? PdVSA was suppose to make things better and spread the wealth. As we all know, its been all down hill since. The only good thing is that in 1976 they thought there was about 25 years of oil left. We now know there is a lot more and that the heavy crude can be recovered. So there is still hope but not without getting rid of the big thieves who steal by the millions and sometimes billions.

  32. Kepler Says:

    “the 3 basic levels of human development:”
    Mein Gott!
    “and life can be divided in 4″
    “and the principles of communication are 7″

    That’s what you say when you read so many self-help books.

    Sigh (3 times)

  33. HalfEmpty Says:

    I’m for everyone having a stick and trained in stickage.

  34. firepigette Says:

    Miguel,

    It is certainly extremely hard for some Venezuelan poor, and there will be many who steal a little to survive, and one can hardly blame them.If a man or woman sees children go hungry on a regular basis and have tried all options and failed I would never judge that harshly.

    However many in Venezuela are not that poor but steal anyway just because it is a common thing to do and they can do it with impunity just because they don’t want any kind hardship or deprivation at all.Some even steal to wear fashionable clothes.Some steal by owing money to half the world, others by covert behaviors.

    Humans all have the same needs but not in the same order, and for some, honor goes before all else.These people will not bend to the common customs.
    I have poor relatives in Venezuela who do not steal or work as hidden Chavistas and never would simply because for them honor is their highest value.

    My comment was only to clarify Roy’s comment which according to studies and or to simple experience, is incorrect.

    I know many people who work very hard in Venezuela to help folks learn the value of greater independence from groupthink, and to understand the value of self esteem and personal integrity.This will in the future increase the amount of those who pass from the middle level of folks who steal if they think they won’t be caught, to the more independent level of those who can stand alone.This eventually will help get rid of the caudillo mentality. It is a matter or moral evolution.This is something we need in all countries, not just Venezuela.

  35. Roy Says:

    Torres,

    Not to belabor your metaphor, but don’t you have to fight the man first before you can take away his stick?

  36. Roy Says:

    Firepigette,

    When you were living in Venezuela, did you change money at the official rate, or buy Bs. from someone offering a bit more than the official rate?

  37. island canuck Says:

    Roy,

    Law or no there is only 1 person in Venezuela who thinks the rate is 4,3.

    In the last 11 years there have been 2 or 3 amendments to the illegal exchange law threatening all sorts of extreme penalties for exchanging outside of official sources.

    Like many laws in this country nobody pays any attention to it.

    Drinking & driving, talking on your cel phone while driving or changing foreign currencies – all there to be applied but nobody does.

  38. A_Antonio Says:

    What I hate most of the present stealing situation is that in high spheres of power, many steal like they try to ensure the economic maintenance of their next 20 generations.

    Provably the money will be wasted it in one generation or two by their families, administration isn’t in their genes.

    And after Chavez, none of that money will be recovered; neither will be useful to reconstruct the country.

  39. loroferoz Says:

    “This has been the case for decades, which is what taught me that the less Government we have, the better. Not only is is difficult to be watching over everyone, but Venezuela simply did not have the people to run all of the things the Government wanted to run.”

    Precisely my thoughts on the matter.

    “These areperas, are supposed to be a fairly symbolic project, because it is subsidized and attempts to sell a popular staple, competing with the “capitalist” establishments that supposedly rip people off.”

    The areperas I pass along on the way to work sell arepas and empanadas, at the prices (or cheaper than) the much vaunted Arepera Socialista. Only Socialism could come up with an answer to a need nobody had, and give an answer that does not begin to be wrong.

    Amieres said:

    “I don’t believe Chavez is naive at all about human nature. If someone knows the venezuelans is Chavez. ”

    And he is right. He is the biggest Confidence Man Venezuela has produced in the 20th. Century. He will say a lot about Social Conscience, Virtue and Altruism. But when you open your eyes and look at Venezuela, you realize he has managed to mount a whole regime on Corruption Greed and Violence, that he is surrounded by associates that obviously and freely practice the former three , much worse than anything the “Fourth” ever begat on those areas. He is the guys that Orlov in the God of War movie spoke about. Liberation that, Freedom this. Yeah right…

  40. Roy Says:

    Loro,

    You are absolutely correct about Chavez being Con Man and his mark in this case, is the entire country of Venezuela. But, cons only work on people who are greedy and want something for nothing. The man who has no desire for that which he has not earned is immune to the con.

    So, who is the most guilty? Chavez, or el pueblo?

  41. torres Says:

    Roy: “Not to belabor your metaphor, but don’t you have to fight the man first before you can take away his stick?”

    Not in this case. By simply making cash distribution a platform, you are taking away the stick, and that is without a fight. Because, even without getting control of the government, the concept of everyone receiving their share, never worrying about being below the poverty line again, and preventing anyone else from getting more than anyone else, becomes a meme.

    It becomes the platform representing the poor *without a fight*.

  42. Roy Says:

    Island,

    Of course, you are right. My point to Firepigette, is that everyone will steal under certain circumstances. In this case, if you disobey the law and change for a different rate than the law says, you are a thief. And if you don’t, then you are a fool.

    I once lived in a place where (without going into the whole story) the traffic police force was non-existent for three weeks. The first week, everyone mostly continued driving normally, obeying traffic laws and norms. By the beginning of the second week, about 20% of the drivers regularly flouted the normal traffic rules. By the end of the third week, almost no one paid any attention to normal traffic rules and the streets were a complete free-for-all. Those few who tried to drive in accordance with the law could not get anywhere, because the rest of the mob, which didn’t respect the laws any longer simply wouldn’t let them into the traffic until they finally asserted themselves and forced their way, just like everyone else.

  43. island canuck Says:

    Hey Roy, just like here :-)

  44. Roger Says:

    I think A_Antonio has a good point. When I was in Venezuela the excuse I heard for a lot of shady practices was “I do it for mi famalia” and the way they said it I would bet they would pass a lie detector test! This is not just a Bolivarian or Venezuelan thing. I saw the same thing in the Philippines and it seems to be common in most of the former Spanish colonies. Its like something from Cervantes or the play Romeo and Juliet! With all the oil money and the current government it is now far beyond what the
    Spanish Crown ever had to deal with.
    I wish some one would expand on this “cultural” thing.

  45. loroferoz Says:

    “But, cons only work on people who are greedy and want something for nothing. The man who has no desire for that which he has not earned is immune to the con.”

    One W.C. Fields’ shady character, Whipsnade a con man, said that his grandfather’s last words of advice were “You can’t cheat an honest man”. Simply true.

    But wait! Whipsnade continues in the same breath with “never give a sucker an even break, or smarten up a chump.”. I will only say that our Confidence Man seems to have seen the whole movie and learned.

  46. A_Antonio Says:

    There is some pretentious subject that says his live worth 100 million $.

    The tragedy of these pretentious subjects is that the damage they make to a country and its future worth 100 millions times the cost they think their lives deserve.

  47. island canuck Says:

    A_Antonio;

    Here is the story in English
    http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCATRE6AJ1OL20101120

    Chaves says:
    He accused the fugitive boss of pro-opposition TV station Globovision, Guillermo Zuloaga, of being one of those behind the plan. Zuloaga fled to the United States earlier this year after being charged with fraud over his car dealership.

    If this asswipe thinks his life couldn’t be bought for a fraction of $100 million he’s dreaming. This is just another narcistic preening of his ego.

  48. A_Antonio Says:

    Island, thanks to complete the comment. :-)

  49. loroferoz Says:

    “There is some pretentious subject that says his live worth 100 million $.”

    The flimflam man, again using one of his old favorite lies to raise some personal sympathy (for himself) and maybe kindle a flame of fanaticism from his hardcore supporters. He also represents that he must be doing something good for the poor and dispossessed that “they” (the rich, the enemies of the people) want him dead.

    Fortunately, the over use of the lie, the absence of actual attempts (not even on April 11 to 13 2002) and the ridiculous montages and setups by his incompetent minions (para-cachitos and the antitank RPG to shoot down his plane come to mind)… have worn the lie away.

  50. dcisfun Says:

    tragically the arepera fiasco was only discovered, after a disgruntled employee at the shop blew the whistle and went the police, otherwise, no one in charge of running the place (auditing anyone?) had noticed the missing funds…

    no honor among thieves i suppose…

  51. dcisfun Says:

    a bigger question would be who actually runs comersa? http://settysoutham.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/dscn5841.jpg


  52. [...] of areperas socialistas, then it was not long after that some of the revolutionary workers  were caught stealing from the till. (Whatever happened to Minister Saman that was going to work for free a few hours a week? I guess [...]


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