Closing arguments

The Governor makes his case in this, one of the final videos of the campaign.

I asked a friend close to the Comando Venezuela why Capriles didn’t emphasize the secrecy of the vote, one of the major concerns at this stage. He told me they find it’s best to not say it straight out. He says it’s more effective to give people reasons and courage to confront their fears about voting, than to simply say “the vote is secret.”

The strategy is then not to explain to people their vote is secret, but to empower them. When Capriles says “nobody has the right to threaten you,” he’s saying “use your vote and stick it to the man; do it for yourself.”

As a strategy, it’s unexpected, and oddly compelling.

Finally, doesn’t it say a lot that one of the crucial issues at this stage is people wanting to vote for Capriles … but being afraid to do so?

Nice “democracy” you’ve built here, Hugo.

23 thoughts on “Closing arguments

  1. I agree with Capriles, especially for the long run.Capriles is certainly a man of uncommon virtues for a politician.Good for him!!

    Ganging up on people whether politically or in non -political situations strikes fear in the hearts of many.This fear has to be overcome, in order to crush a dictatorship.It’s generally good for people to exercise their willingness to stand up for their own truth.

    On the other hand I do not think that the opposition should stoop to the same tactics as in the following repugnant video:


    • C’mon FP! You are always talking about people not reacting enough, and when they do, you call them repugnant?
      I disagree that the video is “repugant”. It shows that people are not scared anymore, besides, this was not planned by the MUD, it was a simple impromptu reaction of the crowd towards Chavista controlers.
      I don’t applaude the reason though: the workers were doing their job not letting people through without a ticket – the right thing to do – but I like the fact that people are really facing the bullies.
      Remember when a couple of years ago some 3-something people were detained by the police for complaining about the metro’s delay..?

      I would say, kudos for riasing voices and confronting the bullies.


      • If we are to close this chapter we want to start recognizing that in the other side there is honest and well intended people that want the same thing that we want, which is to make this place better.

        If we proceed with insults and witch hunts then we are screwed.


        • Maybe you guys are just nicer than me and have a different scale for the meaning of “repugnant”.
          This is repugnant to me, and one that I will never forget:

          Again, it’s just about facing – standing up straight and with loud voice – the bareface abuse of this governement.


          • Thanks for the reminder, Carolina, the powerful visual of an imbalanced delusional. If one believes that chavismo will lose on 7-8O, then the irony will be that Chávez will be left holding, not only the oppo’s victoria de mierda, but also a colostomy bagful of his own.


      • Its wrong and an abuse that people going to chavista demonstrations get a free ride on the subway and I understand that the people in the video are protesting that some of the opposition member are not getting a free ride the day of the Capriles rally (IMHO no one should get a free ride to go to a political demonstration). Most of the people in the metro are working class folks following orders who need a job to support their family. They probably don’t appreciate a bunch of sifrinos calling them jalabolas without knowing who are they going to vote for. A bit of chigüire wisdom


    • Jesus, I hope this isn’t a sign of things to come. I remember back in Honduras in 2009 I first realized how quickly things can devolve from simple, cathartic name calling to outright violence. Hopefully this is the worst we’ll see things get in the run up to O7. I realize that finally standing up to 14 years of the fat man’s rule is empowering but things can escalate quickly. Chavez will be beaten at the polls, not in the streets.


  2. Carolina,

    Reacting by being up front with the truth and ganging up on people are 2 different ball games.

    I liked MCM because she confronted Chavismo at the appropriate times and moments, but the behavior in this video is just plain mean, bullying behavior.


    Capriles stands for reconciliation.The people in the video are far from representing his beliefs.


    • They are not there representing Capriles beliefs. they are there representing their own beliefs.
      Have you ever imagined what would be your reaction if you ever had the opportunity to come face to face with Chavez himself? Would you shake his hand with a smile and talk about reconciliation?
      I personally wouldn’t.


      • The civilized, grown-up me would engage him into discussion about how his policies ruined the Venezuelan economy, and perhaps more importantly, divided its people creating irreparable damage. I would not be content until he is ashamed of what his ego and fake revolution did to the Venezuelan people.

        …But I would probably just go for the trachea.


      • Carolina,

        The opposition does represent Capriles ( hopefully)

        I would not shake Chavez’s hand, but I would not gang up on a group of Chavistas on the street unless they were hurting someone either.

        Like I mentioned earlier, this is the type of behavior I associate with Chavismo.

        Rodrigo also said it, there are many good people among the Chavistas as well.

        Hopefully when Chavez leaves office all these wrongs can be rectified, and some people can be brought to justice in the proper way.Lashing out like this only creates an ugly scene.


        • HCR’s speech is very smart. He’s calling for people to stand up for their right to decide and not to fall for Chavistas intimidation.
          Sadly, it’s been so much of this smacking up and instigation throughout these 14 years than people are not reacting as calmly as the reason dictates, most specially when Chavez himself has called for a civil war!! Look at what happened to the poor Corpoelec labourer and his brother when trying to do his job. I hold Chavez 100% accountable for this, so don’t ask me to be nice to him or to his crew.
          I really hope that if HCR keeps his cool as he has done to this point, people would follow him.


        • I shook Chavez hand in 2001. Can I get credit for giving him cancer a decade later?

          If I got that close again, there would be a verbal confrontation Chavez would never forget. The ladies in the metro would look very kind in comparison.


    • It is known here that FP and I are not the best friends ever, and we very often disagree passionately. Yet, here, I agree wholeheartedly.

      People, what the fuck you win by doing stuff like this? Do you honestly think you’ll make them change their minds? Do you think it will make undecided people have sympathy on you? You might be contributing to lose votes. Is it really worthy to alienate people just to blow steam? If so, I hope that makes you feel better if we lose on 7O.

      Take the high road. If you are fucking better than them, start showing it.


      • It gives one the “pre-2008” creeps…

        “Este govierno va a caer?!” Come on, doñas… stab yourselves if you want, but leave the unity candidate out of it.


  3. I think this is the right approach by the Capriles campaign. The fact that Capriles repeats that the vote is secret on TV will not change somebody whose mind is made up. Rather, bringing up the issue of secrecy to the foredront can actually create more doubt in people than actually help.

    Better to empower people to vote their mind regardless of secrecy.


    • yes, it was a brilliant tactic not to repeat the tired cliché of ‘el voto es secreto’, but rather, to state a more empowering ‘tu voto tiene el poder de decirle a quien te presiona… usa la fuerza de tu voto…’

      Every word in this message is beautifully thought out and crafted … cada palabra tiene su buen peso. I’m so impressed.


  4. Perfect timing, perfect message from Capriles, in light of the the fear mongering and bullying from the Chávez camp, leading up to and during elections.

    During several earlier voting sessions at the Venezuelan consulate in Toronto, our long line-ups, outside, were frequently accompanied by the legal chants of “uh-ah Chávez no se va,” etceteras, on the other side of the street, by a coordinated left with members from Canada, the D.R., and Cuba, judging by the ‘pinta’ and flags used. Inside the consulate, I’d hear snide remarks from a chavista volunteer to one from the oppo. All this was disconcerting to witness within a larger climate of peace. But of course, it paled in comparison to the climate of fear most people experience in their daily lives, in Vz.

    Therefore, and in relation to the video I earlier posted, and firepigette repeats, here, those who do not live in Venezuela, nor vote, have absolutely no business opining on the isolated efforts of the public to counteract that 14-year fear. Just the same way that they have absolutely no business trying to put a damper on people’s hope and the positive energy justifiably surrounding the Capriles camp.

    The mostly young women in the metro took it upon themselves to “take-back-the-day”, so to speak. Would I have joined them, if I lived in that climate of fear? No. But I understand their efforts and I understand the messages (beyond the vulgar), among them: we will not fear you anymore. Unfortunately, their target may have included decent (not in the MCM definition of the word) Venezuelans who prefer, or are forced to prefer, the Chávez dream.

    A cacerolazo nacional is in the works for Saturday October 6th (“Despidiendo al saliente”).


      • Unfortunately for her, and not her fault, MCM would repeatedly come across with Merici/sifrina undertones, during her pre-candidature. (She’s improved since then.
        I recently saw her actually hugging without ‘fear of germs’ two women of el pueblo — como debe ser; we’re all human beings.) Back then, her delicate fingering as she attempted to touch women of el pueblo, mixed with her calls to represent ‘gente decente’, got misinterpreted and easily slid into sifrinoide territory. Plus, MCM’s calls automatically assumed that chavistas were not gente decente.

        There are bad apples in both camps. There are also people who believe in the Chávez dream, who are not able to see the big picture of what Chávez’ so-called socialism is all about, and who are just as ‘decente’ as people who believe in the alternative.

        The few young-ish women who independently hassled the chavistas that got a free ride on the subway to attend a political rally, were wrong to label them in public as ‘jalabolas’. First, because it’s a vulgarity that’s not needed. Secondly, for reasons I earlier mentioned. However, I found their anger interesting. For, in that little act, they reversed the fear tactics put upon them and millions of others, as a result of over a decade’s worth of violent words and emotional blackmail, used by an imbalanced leader to create victims of his subjects.

        That climate of fear, especially before election day, has to be stemmed. And it can only start through individual acts of courage by people who shake off their victimhood to say: “we’re not afraid of you, anymore”. My preference is that they do so by voting, not by harassing, in public, and calling chavistas ‘jalabolas’.

        Sorry for the on-and-on to answer your simple question.


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