We’re Saved! Now We Have Hugo Chavez By Carlos M. Reymundo Roberts

August 10, 2012

We’re saved! Now we have Hugo Chavez By Carlos M. Reymundo Roberts in La Nacion

The U.S. government and legislators from that country demonstrated again this week their concern for the poor business climate in Argentina. They say we close borders, that we do not pay debts and are unreliable. I have a message for the White House and Capitol Hill. Don’t worry. Now everything will change: We just had Chavez join Mercosur!

I am convinced this will provoke a sigh of relief in all of you. Commander Hugo is synonymous with legal certainty, and even if he has expropriated thousands of businesses, properties and independent media, he has has done so up front and usually pays compensation (that’s the part of Bolivarian socialism that Cristina does not like)

We Argentines are also happy. Now, at last, the great natural gas pipeline linking Caracas to Buenos Aires, which was announced during the presidency of Nestor (kirchner) will advance. The work is a bit delayed: let’s say, it has yet to be started. But when they start, hold yourself! They will advance at the same speed as the Banco del Sur, announced in 2007 and conceived as a South American International Monetary Fund. It’s a great idea, spectacular. Basically for now is just that: an idea. It will take shape and brin the Monetary Fund and the World Bank to its knees, even if for the Argentines, and especially for Kirchnerism, it may involve a great sacrifice: we propose that Boudou and Vandenbroele preside it, two entrepreneurs who surely at some point will become  known.

It makes me salivate thinking about the momentum that will be gained by other initiatives we have been announcing for years. Do you remember the regional common currency, the Sucre? Of all the projects this is the most advanced, with the only subtlety that for now the common currency is the US dollar. I think if we want to finally make this happen, the right person to handle it is-again-Boudou. I tell him he has to create a new currency, the guy goes and solves everything.

And the Railroad of the South (Tren del Sur)? We announced it with much fanfare on August 20, 2008 at the railway station of La Rinconada, Caracas. What a wonder: a train that was to unite that capital with Buenos Aires. “It’s a realizable utopia,” the then Ambassador of Argentina in Venezuela, Alicia Castro dared to say. Work began and ended on that day. People seem to prefer a different type of adventure tourism. But now that he is unemployed Schiavi could be entrusted to restart it. In any case, with the suggestion that the train arrives station Retiro, rather than station Once.

And the 600 gas stations that were to be installed here jointly by Enarsa and PDVSA? They only built two and I think they have disappeared. Again, the idea was excellent. Perhaps the problem was that financing was from Banco del Sur, the gas was going to come via the Gasoducto del Sur and the materials needed were going to be brought by the utopian train.

Enarsa and PDVSA also did not build a dam, as they had promised, and never finalized the project of creating joint ventures for the enhancement of natural gas for cars. This is fine. If you do everything at once, the people adopt bad habits. With the addition of Chavez to Mercosur other things are guaranteed. Airplanes that come from Venezuelan with dollar for the lady’s campaign will no longer have to undergo custom’s controls. Air Traffic will be more fluid.  For example, if the Boca Juniors team took four days to return from Caracas, in the future it will be no more than two or three days.

Another advantage: Chavez a few years ago lent us one billion dollars at a rate of 14%, which was considered abusive. For example, this is much higher than the one charged by the IMF. It was such a scandal that we never went back to ask him for a dollar. He was the last guy that threw some mangoes at us and we treated him like an usurer. Now that he is our partner (and the world continues not to lend us anything) we should apologize and re-finance ourselves with him It would be fair treatment: we tell him how much we want and he tells us at what rate. We should trust him. I don’t think it will be more than 20 percent.

On the other hand, the Lady already said it: Mercosur is now the fifth largest economy in the world. No matter that we live in a constant trade bout with Brazil, or that Uruguay accuses us of corruption in a dredging project in the Rio de La Plata and that we promoted the suspension of Paraguay to manage Venezuela’s entry into Mercosru via the back window. It does not matter if next year in Brazil people will be able to buy dollars even in tire stores, while here we want to turn into rubber those that buy dollars. What matters is what we want. Ti me the picture of Cristina, Dilma, Hugo and el Pepe together joining hands seems super tender. Let businessmen fight, let the people have fears, and let Governments kill each other: The Presidents will eat partridges.

Welcome then Commander Hugo Chavez of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Welcome to the natural gas pipeline, the bank, the train, the Sucre. The gas stations and the refinery. Welcome Antonini Wilson, the planes full of dollar bills and the transparent deals of the socialist Caribbean. And welcome, above all, a more democratic and respectful of human rights Mercosur, in which the assassins and rapists of our prisons could be rehabilitated campaigning for Hugo Chavez in Caracas.

(Note added: And now PDVSA says it will help Argentina exploit gas and oil deposits in the Falklands. Another empty promise)

30 Responses to “We’re Saved! Now We Have Hugo Chavez By Carlos M. Reymundo Roberts”

  1. Andres F Says:

    I guess the poorer, more twisted you are, the more filling empty promises can be.

  2. island canuck Says:

    Very, very funny.
    My morning smile.

  3. CarlosElio Says:

    There is a common thread uniting all those diatribes: an overpowering desire to make grandiose announcements with total disregard for the work that lies behind the grandiose projects. We had a governor in Michigan who announced that all kids would have a laptop. John Engler had pictures of himself in front of a wall of laptop in their shinny boxes. He forgot about the training, the software, the maintenance, the network and the curricular objectives of those machines. Like Engler, Chavez had pictures of the VenSat satellite roaring into the upper atmosphere from a Chinese space launch site. CANTV Web page of the time announced that 2,000 schools, 10,000 teachers and 2 million students would benefit from the electronic education channel ushered in by the satellite. They forgot to train the teachers, develop on-line lesson plans, and procure the computers and their connectivity. Not a single lesson has been delivered by VenSat.
    I wrote about the common thread and would like to share my views with the readers her http://bit.ly/pBNd0k

    (Miguel, if this is considered contraband, I beg your pardon)

  4. Desde el Sur Says:

    Brazil has always had currency exchange controls. Please bear in mind that Venezuela’s policy is one of “CURRENCY EXCHANGE PROHIBITION”, rather than simple garden-variety exchange controls, which by the way, exist in most countries.

    What Reymundo meant by saying Brazilians will be able to “buy dollars even in tire stores” is related to a new policy created just last week. In order to have enough currency exchange outlets for the World Cup and the Olympics, the government will allow any type of business that caters to tourists to perform currency exchange operations.

    Prior regulations only allowed banks, brokerages, currency dealers and hotels to perform currency exchange…

    To the best of my knowledge, Venezuela’s regime is only comparable to North Korea’s: total exchange prohibitions, with regime cronies having access to hard currency and an illegal black market for physical North Korean Won vs. Dollar and vs. Renminbi.

  5. Ken Says:

    This is a little off topic, and I apologize. But I think in the spirit of the article; When do we find out more about the US spy that is being interrogated that President Chavez captured yesterday. The world is waiting.

    • island canuck Says:

      Yeah, I’m thinking Schwarzenegger or Rambo coming to do in the prez.

      As has been pointed out this is assassination attempt number 4,561 since he took office. No one knows who or what will do him in first – Rambo or the big C. :-)

      It’s better than a soap opera – too bad it’s real life.

      • HalfEmpty Says:

        Fellow is said to be one of Uncle Sams Misguided Children, so it is entirely reasonable to assume the worst. United Fruits likely provided the cash and the cover.

    • Roberto N Says:

      I really like the fact that the guy:

      1) Had a paper notebook with “coordinates” written down. Like you couldn’t, for example, text them to yourself .

      2) Is a Gringo of Latino descent with a passport stamped by “war hotspot countries”. You think a person like that can’t get a “clean” passport?

      And that we have not heard anything else about him. No photo, no name, no nothing.

    • Roy Says:

      Of course, if Venezuela has indeed captured an American citizen, Venezuela has an obligation to notify the American Embassy and provide consular access to that person. Since they have not done so:

      A. There is no such American citizen in Venezuelan custody and Chavez is lying.

      or,

      B. Venezuela is blatantly breaking several international laws.

      Take your pick.

      • island canuck Says:

        Just another Chavez paranoid diversion. Will end up being nothing – no name, no details, no proof.

      • Kepler Says:

        Roy,
        It’s part of the Treadstone group. I think they caught someone like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%89dgar_Ram%C3%ADrez Édgar Ramírez…

        And you know how they find out? A sergeant of the Bolivarian Army discovered it on a crossword and alerted the border police.

      • Kepler Says:

        Well, Roy…thinking about it: if there were really a US American who got caught as an agent (which I doubt very very much, specially with a stamped passport with “Afghanistan” and “Iraq” and “coordinates”), I am not sure there is a law that says he had to get consular access that fast. Do you remember Anna Chapman?
        But of course: that is if there were really such a person.

        • Roy Says:

          Kepler,

          See Article 36 of Vienna Convention.

          But, of course, there is is no such detainee, so it would not apply. There are no laws against politicians lying. Menos mal.

          • Kepler Says:

            I read it now, I knew there was something like that in that declaration, but I have always assumed there are exceptions that are precisely related to these (hypothetical) agent cases.
            .
            Do Russian or Chinese spies caught in the USA, US Americans in Russia, have immediate access to such lawyers?
            That’s why I mentioned Chapman (et alia). They got an exchange in the end, but it was not like “you have 24 hours to put me through my ambassador or an UN resolution is coming to you”.

            I don’t know…that’s what I think.

            But again, I don’t believe there is a spy or agent in this case, so we are talking about legalities on fictitious cases.

            I would love to see if there are special laws defined for agents.

    • Gringo Says:

      It is a false flag, like the alleged Polish attack on Germany which Hitler staged in order to “justify” the invasion of Poland.

  6. Ken Says:

    Maybe he is a cold war era spy that has been on the run, and never has heard about texting.

  7. Che Says:

    it’s interesting because Argentina and Venezuela have similar intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance requirements. Argentina wants to eyeball the Falklands and Venezuela its neighbors and the Caribbean. Radars and satellites under way. Venezuela is the perfect partner to finance Argentina’s nascent civilian and military rocket programs. China is the model

  8. CharlesC Says:

    O/T-but I have a question? Whydoes Chavez sell oil (crude) to China at below market value? Is there some backdoor advantage here? Of course, Chavez will not explain.. And, now Dr. Coronel points out-Ecuador is doing the same thing -selling oil to China at below-market price to pay for loans?

    http://lasarmasdecoronel.blogspot.com/2012/08/rafael-correa-tambien-se-baja-los.html#!/2012/08/rafael-correa-tambien-se-baja-los.html

    • Ira Says:

      It’s pretty simple:

      Chavez considers China to be an “enemy” of the U.S., and by helping the enemy of my enemy, he thinks he’s helping himself.

      The problem with his theory his is that not only does it hurt VZ in so many ways, the world doesn’t work that way any more. We don’t live in a totally bi-polar global system where “enemies” are so clearly defined, although Chavez would like this to be the case. It’s how he garners support, by creating imaginary enemies, and “giving away the farm” to these nations in hopes of garnering influence.

      Remember Chavez’s invitation for the Russians to establish bases in VZ? What happened?

      Nothing–for the same reason, over and over and over again:

      The U.S. DWARFS VZ in economic power. Yeah, opportunistic situations will exist where nations want to take advantage of Hugo’s largesse and “generosity,” but they’re not doing it to hurt the U.S. They’re just looking for a good deal, and Hugo’s socialism has nothing to do with it.

      Once this comes in conflict with their economic interests with the U.S., they will drop it like a hot potato. In other words:

      They’ll go where the money is, and the money ain’t in VZ. It’s in the U.S.

    • CharlesC Says:

      Now Ramirez says today-they have never sold any oil before to anyone below market price. And, said Venezuela sells oil to China “for a better
      price than from the USA”
      I heard and read months ago that China received oil from Venzuela for as little and $5 a barrel.
      And, think of shipping cost back to China?
      IF that is so- why does China sell oil from Venezuela to USA?

  9. CharlesC Says:

    While not intending to promote La Patilla per se, they do have interesting articles and editorials on daily basis.
    Here are a couple from today:

    http://www.lapatilla.com/site/2012/08/11/rafael-guarin-el-milagro-de-chavez/

    (Chavez is a nightmare, really.)

    http://www.lapatilla.com/site/2012/08/11/el-nuevo-herald-chavez-se-alista-en-secreto-para-invasion-de-eeuu/

    This last article is really incredible. I think most people are not aware of this
    as “Chavez’s dream” -nightmare really.

    • Roy Says:

      The reality is that Chavez just doesn’t have what it takes to be a big enough pain in the ass, for the United States to bother with. I am sure he would like to think that he is truly a force to be reckoned with. So, let him prepare for an invasion that is not coming and never was.

      • Ronaldo Says:

        The problem is that Chavez is an unpredictable psychopath who owns $billions of Russian fighter jets, tanks, submarines, AK47s, etc. If Chavez is in trouble he may attack US interests in order to produce a counter attack. Chavez would claim the Venezuelan act was a preemptive attack. Of course, the U.S. could destroy the Venezuelan military in 2-3 hours, but Chavez would be able to say he was right about the invasion all along.

        Oh and Chavez would hide under a desk the whole time.

        • CharlesC Says:

          It goes beyond all of the weapons. This training millions to be guerillas,for
          example. (Not going to be a lot of jobs for these people??)Little guerillas even -children..man, this is barbaric culture. Vietnam all over again.
          You know- it is a shame when your President worships the guerilla as his hero -model for society.
          Asymmetrical warfare- taken to extreme- is terrorism, not following any rules
          of engagement. What a freakin’ nightmare Chavez dreams!
          And, asymmetrical warfare- legitimizes drugselling as a means of financing.And, kidnapping, no morals.Period.
          How can one brain -Chavez have this in it- and the other side is
          “christian”?

  10. Susan Sweet Says:

    We in the US are overjoyed as well. Since Prez Obama and Prez Chavez are
    such bosom buddies, we know we will be getting free oil from Venesuela in the future. S.

    • Ira Says:

      Can you please explain how they’re such bosom buddies?

      I would like you to support this claim, which I find totally meaningless.

  11. Bill S. Says:

    Catepillar would love this project. I’m not so sure Brazil would like half their country dug up though. I guess they are OK with that. I’ve noticed that Brazil seems to be increasing their purchases of military equipment. Now I see that it is needed to guard Hugo’s pipeline through all that Amazon jungle. I thought they were worried about an invasion from Paraguay.
    China is probably worried. They thought that they would soon take over the world, but after this pipe is finished, it will no doubt be Argentina. Goes to show you how fast geopolitics can change with enlightened leadership. I can’t wait to see the map of the oil pipeline across the Pacific Ocean to China. That will be a sad day up here in the USA because Hugo won’t ship any more oil across the Gulf to refineries on the Gulf Coast. Maybe if we sold them all to the Chinese, he still might sell us some oil?

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