Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Dec 20/05 - Comparative electoral authorities: Bolivia's VW vs. Hugo's Rolls Royce

Smaller, cheaper, better?

PMBComments: At the suggestion of Alek Boyd from VCrisis, I recommend you check the website of the Bolivian electoral authority http://www.cne.org.bo/ and compare the experience with that of visiting the site of Venezuela's high tech - and massively expensive - electoral apparatus or CNE http://www.cne.gov.ve

Two weeks after the botched parliamentary election Jorge Rodriguez's discredited CNE has not been able to provide definitive results. According to insiders, they have been trying to embellishing the results in order to make them more presentable to their irate boss in Miraflores. The massive abstention (83%+), the high number of null votes from those that had to go but did not want to vote (10%+) , and the results from the military garrisons (50%+ null) need to be dressed up…and then explained. Rumor has it they have called upon the country's top thanatologists to lend a hand.

This past Sunday, in his weekly talk-a -thon, Mr. Chávez fumed about his missing 7.5 million votes. He blamed all except himself and his inept and dictatorial manner of governance. The government’s undiplomatic attacks on the electoral observers have turned into a daily occurrence making their presence in any future event as unlikely as an electoral event itself (it took Chávez & Co. a few days to react, but they suddenly understood the real significance of the preliminary reports which say “fair and transparent” in rather formulaic and disingenuous fashion, but then ravage the whole process in a rather frank and enduring manner).

As I have said many times, Hugo Chávez will not move a finger to create conditions for free and fair elections. Those who have failed to understand the nature and frailty of his “massive popular support” stated that he would win this election – and any other - hands down. But Hugo Chávez learned his lesson well when signatures for the recall referendum were collected and when millions of people lined up for up to 13 hours to vote YES to his recall. After the fiasco of 4-D, he will not bet again that people are grateful for having their country and their future decimated by a fraudulent revolution and its smoke and mirrors “Misiones”. PMB