Dim Wattage


See if you can detect the tension between these two recent news items:

April 17th: In an interview with Barquisimeto newspaper El Impulso, Electrical Engineer Luis Vásquez Corro said that if there’s no rain in coming days (due to the El Niño phenomenon) Guri hydro-electric plant would be forced to shut down its turbines.

Two days later, Vásquez Corro, who heads the Electric Industry Commission at the Lara State Chapter of the Venezuelan Engineers’ Guild (Colegio de Ingenieros de Venezuelawas detained by SEBIN agents and held for two days. He was then released (pictured), but not before he was formally charged by a local court of “spreading false news” (under Article 296 of the Penal Code).

Interior Minister Gustavo Gonzalez Lopez called his crime an “an electrical alarm” and part of “a destabilization plan”. Electricity Minister Jesse Chacon harshly dismissed Vasquez Corro’s comments and said Guri won’t be stopped at all.

April 28th: Vice-President Jorge Arreaza and Electricity Minister Jesse Chacon hold a joint press conference.

The headline announcements from the meeting are a drastic reduction in the public administration’s working hours (only from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.) as well as the implementation of Resolution 35 (published in 2013) to limit electric consumption by private businesses.

Who’s to blame for this?

The heat wave now gripping the country and our increasing demand.


After two years on the job, Mr. Chacon has not solved the crisis (or kept his promises). Don’t expect much from him.

63 thoughts on “Dim Wattage

  1. I hope it does not rain and the turbines have to be shut down. The man was stating a fact that everyone knows.
    It is difficult to read these articles and not wonder if there are any rational people in the government.

    Liked by 1 person

    • “It is difficult to read these articles and not wonder if there are any rational people in the government.”

      That’s what I’ve been saying. They are not people at all. They are zombies that host a memetic parasite. They are no longer there


    • I hope it does not rain and the turbines have to be shut down.

      It staggers me that voicing this kind of opinion is socially acceptable. There are dialysis machines relying on those turbines. There are vaccines in fridges being kept viable by those turbines. There are maternity ward incubators riding on those turbines. There are millions of ordinary people’s jobs and livelihoods dependent on those turbines. This isn’t some fucking game, this is the life of the whole country.

      You’re effectively saying you hope for the deaths of thousands of innocent people and the misery of millions more.

      You’re saying you hate chavismo more than you love Venezuela.

      It’s a monstruous opinion, morally bankrupt beyond all measure.

      That people – not just you, many people – are under the delusion that this is a morally acceptable thing to believe is as much a sign of the collapse of our public sphere as anything any chavista has said in recent times.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I think that Alej didn’t have these consequences in mind when he spoke. It was a careless statement, not a morally monstrous one.


      • Anger tends to shut down the logical part of the brain, that’s why there are things like that being said.


      • Mr Toro, “It’s a monstruous opinion, morally bankrupt beyond all measure.” Is it in your opinion more monstrous than what the current government has done to this country? Shall I remind you that for lack of radiation machines parts, mastectomy is now all the vogue? Also in your opinion, is it also socially unacceptable when one states that all these clowns should join Chavez “por la buena o por la mala”?


      • I think what Alej means is that there has to be a huge and disastrous event for this government to go down. Lots of dead people, say 100K in a couple of months. If that does not happen then we will be stuck with this government for another 15 years and 20k death per years on violence, plus thousands more for lack of medicines and lack of clean water, etc…

        So, what is worst?


      • That is a bit of an overreaction. You are taking him literally and missing completely what he really meant.

        Alej did not say he hoped for the death of anyone at all. All he did is express a wish for a bit of poetic justice. A wish is a kind of magical thinking where you imagine things that are not possible somehow becoming so and then savoring the result, in your mind. What he meant is that he wished that Vasquez Corro could be proven right in front of everyone and his tormentors be publicly shamed and shown for what they are, scoundrels. Implicit in that wish was also the desire for, again magically, nothing bad happening to anyone else. (maybe he will need to put an imaginary disclaimer next time)

        It is just a form of expression, there is no need to get all riled up because of hypothetical consequences and call him a monster and morally bankrupt “BEYOND ALL MEASURE”.

        You could have brought up the interesting point that electricity is vital for many many people and end up by saying “careful what you wish for”. No need to burn anyone at the stake for an imaginary detour.


      • Watch me burn!!!
        Don’t you think there’s a possibility that at “the long run” the lack of raining could actually save lifes?
        For example, what’s worst?, an electrical crisis for maybe six months, or the government standing at the same spot for 3 more years … which one kill the most?, Are the numbers of life saved all that matters?
        I know that a lack of raining doesn’t really mean the end of chavismo in power, but I really bet that possibility passed through the mind of Alej when he “”dare”” to say that (Or at least I do think in that possibility sometimes).


      • “You’re saying you hate chavismo more than you love Venezuela.”

        Spot on Toro!!!

        Exactly like that. Some of us think that scorched earth is the only way to deal with chavismo. Why not?


      • “You’re effectively saying you hope for the deaths of thousands of innocent people and the misery of millions more. You’re saying you hate chavismo more than you love Venezuela.”

        aren’t these people dying already, because the lack of foreign currency, the constant blackout? and how about the thousands of people being killed every year for a lack of proper security across the country.

        just saying, you are barking the wrong tree…


    • Alej, I won’t go so far as to say it’s a “monstrous” opinion, but it’s a clear unforced error on your part. You should apologize. It’s OK, we’ve all said things like that from time to time.

      However, I think it’s indicative of something the Internet has done to our daily lives. Alej is not in Venezuela (we know thanks to his IP address), and he voices his opinion, an opinion he would not DARE say to someone inside Venezuela. I mean, try telling a Maracucho that you hope Guri dies down, and he says goodbye to his air conditioning for good. You would probably end up in a ditch somewhere close to La Cañada.

      So please, folks (and this goes for myself as well), let’s try and say things that we would feel comfortable saying to each other face to face.


      • “…an opinion he would not DARE say to someone inside Venezuela.”

        You would get surprised to hear the stuff people is capable to spat face-to-face in Venezuela these days…

        Of course, if somebody’s holding a gun, no one’s gonna say “this mouth is mine”.


      • I don’t think a maracucho will kill anybody for that., you are exaggerating.

        He will be very angry but to kill anybody.


      • I don’t know. In Venezuela I have heard people attack each other with a hate that makes Alej look tame.

        Not to mention the different methods murderers employ in the country nowadays. Remember Robert Serra’s death? what about the boys eviscerated and forced to run with their guts hanging in “el 23”?

        It’s not the internet. It’s Venezuela. The country is back in the darkest past, it’s Boves all over again.


        • Impunity breeds monsters, it’s just a side effect of using criminals as a tool to extert control over the population.


      • Maracuchos, orientales and llaneros DID say such things when the last drought hit hard. Overthrowing this government stacks higher in priorities than being at comfy 18º, at least for quite a lot of people. With blackouts every single day, they’re still scorching their bums anyways

        Who? those who understood that this s%&t. is government’s fault and not some “La niña / El niño / Er Coñito sevilluo” B.S.

        Not everyone in venezuela wants to vote and be done with it. More and more people already want this government overthrown and jailed by whatever means. Even some chavistas want to burn maduro’s ass at the stake.

        How much suffering this country has to endure, for some people to actually realize chavismo should be ousted by — whatever — means available?. Seriously, how many deaths, how many human rights violations?. How much?

        How much of chavismo’s deep bowl of mayhem should we drive down our throats before the “politically correct opinionators” shut the F.U and start calling a spade a spade?

        Chavismo MUST be overthrown. Maduro and Co MUST be beaten down and jailed for the rest of his life. Whatever it takes. Toro should tighten his belt someday and just post “How we throw these f****rs out of office?”

        I say such things face to face, i did in the past and always will. Venezuela sinks every day and the only thing we care about is to speak suave and slick. To hell with it.

        Primero muerto que chabacano y politicamente incorrecto, jum!

        Isn’t this a valid demand or am i being a caveman as usual?.

        PS: My father just lost his job yesterday. He’s 57. Also mom’s, 55. I’m barely scrapping overseas to help them, so, don’t ask me to “think thoroughly”. Enough s*** is enough.


  2. I think today’s statement proved Mr. Vásquez Corro right; it’s not «necessary» that we face the apocalypse he warned us about, just to make a point.


  3. Good to know that the blackouts oficially got extended from 2 hours to bloody HOURS here in the central-western part of the country.

    That means, not only the air conditioner becomes useless for a sixt part of the day, going to suck even more power than before when it gets turned on again because it’s got to work like a slave to cold the ambient there, but, FOOD STORED IN FRIDGES RISKS GETTING DAMAGED, making people to lose thousands of the now useless bolivars in the process.

    Dude, when your food for the week risks getting destroyed, rendering your work for the last 15 days useless, many folks would get pissed at that.

    In fact, I do not wish that ALL THE COUNTRY gets blakouted, I wish that ONLY CHABURRO’S EXPENSIVE-AS-FUCK-APPLIANCES GET FRIED, for the “poor”, so they see which is the true “patria”, and the rich, because fuck the boliplastas.


  4. A bountiful land
    Calm waters and peace
    Desire to dance
    Family safe together
    Warm sun
    Smiling youth alive
    Honest fullness
    Loving prayer


  5. Ok..sorry for that comment but… what happens when there are power outages? Was Luis Corro incorrect when he said if there is no rain in a few days that the turbines would have to be shut down? What will happen if there is no rain for a while longer? The Guri is a hydro (depends on water) dam, he states a fact and he is charged. I think it was in 2008 that they had to shut it down for a day and they realised they depend too heavily on the dam. Chavez then started alternative projects… not sure if they ever followed through with them.
    I no longer live in Venezuela but still have family there. I used to visit every year but not any more. The GNB always pester me to buy duty free items for them, so little irritants begin at the airport and multiply during my stay. Not a place for a relaxing vacation.


    • “Chavez then started alternative projects”

      Nope, the corpse ordered to shut down ALL the alternative projects, one of them involved a couple more of dams in the same river.

      Part of the propblem isn’t just about the rain, is that the whole instalations and complexes have been running during years without any maintenance AT ALL, which makes them so vulnerable to get shut down at anytime where equipment properly maintained would’ve run without problems.


    • “The GNB always pester me to buy duty free items for them”

      How is that? A police officer comes up to someone and says: “Buy some Lindt chocolate and a bottle of Amarula for me. Go now, I will be watching you.”

      Something like that?


      • Marc… they need a passport number to purchase duty free so they give me the money and I buy the items. Has this ever happened to anyone else? Once, the customs officer asked me about US currency, I showed him what I had and another half drunk employee,(who standing talking to the person behind the counter) took a 100 bill and was walking away, I had to go after him and made a scene to get it back.


    • Hey, you are in luck now. There’s almost no products on the duty free anymore. Just rum and ponche crema. At least when I visited in February. Torontos were limited to 2 boxes per person.


  6. Sometime ago I said one of the main legacies left by Huguito was rampant “Jessechaconismo”.

    Jessechaconismo is an ideology idiosyncratic of the Venezuelan left. As follows: meritocracy and technocrats are counter-revolutionary, expertise is therefore suspect and best avoided. Only under-qualified people can and must be put in charge.

    The name comes of course from Jesse Chacon, a former low army officer who was ministry of interior and justice at the beginning of the “reign of the pran”; then ascended to ministry of science while scientific production in Venezuela plunged and now has been electrical czar just as electricity rationing begins.

    The guy is a living catastrophe, but still holds high office.

    Maduro is the greatest of all Jessechaconistas, a bus-driver who served as VP, chancellor and then was chosen to be president.


    • And as I said before:

      chavismo = madurismo = jessechaconismo

      They’re all the same and the one thing, dude.


      • they look alike and smell practically the same, but there are differences.

        Chavismo had charisma and a vision (a dark vision, but vision nonetheless). It is like an popular apocalyptic cult.

        Madurismo and Jessechaconismo have no charisma and no vision. It is all about hanging on to power and enjoy it while totally screwing up everything. They are pure nihilism, pure nonsense mixed with propaganda. They are empty.

        The later cannot exist without the first, of course, so in a sense all of these ideologies are inseparable, but they are not the same.

        Chavismo is dead, but the other two are zombies who have a while to go still.


        • The only charisma from the corpse was the petrodollar wallet, nothing more.

          Meeting the guy personally when he was a traitorous nobody in the army wouldn’t have been much different from any other guy that cracks bad jokes every five seconds in any conversation.

          chavismo’s only vision was to fill its pockets with as much public funds as possible, just plain and simple theft.

          The propaganda’s there because it’s much cheaper to spend in that than investing in actual development for the people.

          They’re the one, only and the same, and should never be separated, because that only helps the absurd idea that’s the only hope for chaburrismo’s survival: “maburro isn’t shiabbe”

          chaburrismo and all its so-called derivates must be packed in the same sack for a simple purpose that serves to the wellbeing of Venezuela, its complete obliteration as a political movement, to take the “most hated gang of bastards ever” leaving the “guanábana” as “chicken stealers”.


          • Come on, Hugo was charismatic. I never fell for it, but I can see why most did.

            You are missing something, nuances are important.

            I guy like Hch just wants to see the world burn. Honestly, and unlike the rest, he wasn’t much concerned about personal wealth (he was very corrupt, sure, and liked bling, but a man obsessed with money would have governed differently).

            He wanted to imposed himself and his vision.

            These other guys are very different from him and in a sense are a bona fide product of the venezuelan left: the socially resented mediocre who claims power on the false pretense of being a true Venezuelan.

            Basically, the motherfuckers that destroyed UCV excellence somehow came to collude with our military and create this messy hell.


            • He was a thug and a narcicist of the first order , wanted to project himself melodramatically and histrionically in the life of everyone , he constantly and desperately craved being the centre of attention , he wanted to feel omnipotent by doing or making believe that he was doing grand things or by ruthlessly and sadistically insulring and humiliating his rivals , by playing the ever conquering hero saint and avenger of the suffering but noble poor . He was a megalomaniac who used used his powers of seduction to decieve and delude the ignorant into idolizing him . He never loved the poor but the love they had for him as a way of loving himself. He got a kick from inducing himself and his followers into states of frenzied hatred against a demonized enemy , the better to scenify his life as an epic narrative. He was the victim ( or beneficiary) of a personality disorder which psychologists have named malignant narcicism . He was instilled by a spirit of hubris, he could do anything, he was invincible , he never ever made mistakes , if he suffered failures they were the result of the malicious conspiratorial manouvres of his enemies . He destroyed our country !!


              • Ok

                Well said man, I am glad you got that out of your system.

                In any case, his successors are not as tremendous as he was, wouldn’t you say?


      • Thanks for the link.

        There are troubling and unsurprising similarities.

        Jessechaconismo still has original features, like the jumping from position to position without claiming any technical knowledge, just because of the money.

        For me it’s an extreme version of two Venezuelan traits: “yo soy todero” and “ponganme donde haiga” combined with chavismo’s social prejudices.


  7. Y qué será de la vida de Arné Chacón? Alguien me puede decir cómo va el juicio contra él? Lo liberaron el mismo dia en el que el sangriento golpista de Sabaneta tirara la pata.


  8. Remember some years past when Saudi Arabia had a temporary power shortage problem when temperatures rose to record highs causing a masive increase in the use of air conditioning . Temperatures in much of Venezuela have risen considerably these last few days so maybe thats contributing to the power shortage situation . Still it appears that the power situation was fragile already when the Mr Vasquez warned of the possibility of power shortages if Guri had to shut down as a result of a delay in the coming of the rainy season.

    A similar warning was made some months ago without the govt reacting so drastically as now , I suppose that its because they feel more threatened by bad news now that their popularity has suffered a deep descent as a result of the crisis . I believe some weeks ago they announced that the Guyana Heavy Industries would shut down production due to a shortage of gas , maybe its all part of the same situation .

    We appear to have a regime that feels threatened by any bad news affecting the country , so in tipical bully fashion they punish the messenger when they cant do anything about the causes giving rise to the message.!! Its as if punishing and blaming someone is their way of exorcising the fear they feel that their days are counted as the country becomes more angry and dissapointed with the way theyve handled it and done nothing to prevent the hardships we all are experiencing .!!


    • The problem is not that there are problems.

      The problem is that everybody gets to KNOW there ARE problems.


  9. This is the kind of situations were you refer to solopromesas.com and look for promises made by Jesse. I found one very interesting: “By the end of 2015 the government will duplicate the total installed production capability” (look here http://www.solopromesas.com/?s=chacon&x=0&y=0)
    Let me remind you about how this game was played back in 2011. Chavez blamed the power outages to a water shortage in Guri due to a “severe drought” and based on this conditions an emergency decree was released to fight back.
    With this emergency decree multiple sole-sourced contracts were assigned since the legal bidding process is not required, here is when the bolichicos jumped from kind of wealthy to filthy rich. Multiple contracts were signed under this national emergency without any kind of control or accountability.
    Playing the game of “I wish everything collapse” will destroy our already collapsed economy and will actually help the government because the disaster was not caused by them but by the lack of rain. A third party


  10. I think working 7:30 to 1PM is genius. Look at all the extra time that can now be used to stand in a line for products that may or may not be available!!!! Unless of course the stores are closed due to lack of power.


    • They should be happy. Their working hours got reduced, but their salaries didn’t, that means they got a 20% raise!


  11. As befitting an article touching on the multiple accomplishments of these two specimens, it should be renamed “Dim Wittage”.


  12. “… todos tienen que tener equipos de autogeneración, ya eso es un decreto del año 2010. Hay que garantizar que los grandes consumidores le aporten al país con sus equipos de autogeneración en las horas pico. Ahí vamos llegando a los mil, mil 500 megavatios para pasar esta ola de calor sin afectar la calidad de vida”.

    Ah, el caradurismo de obligar a la gente a que tenga que gastar en comprarse plantas eléctricas, sólo en sucialismo podemos disfrutar de esto.

    “Tercera medida, mi llamado a usted, compatriota, a la familia, a esta hora en su casa, ¿cuántos televisores están prendidos? ¿cuántos aires acondicionados, cuántas luces prendidas? Si hacemos un esfuerzo nacional, todos unidos”,”

    De verdad, que estos tarados ya lo que les falta es decirle a la gente “bájale dos a tu vida”


  13. My two cents on the Alej/Quico fray: I think that everyone is looking for the “game changer” — the event that exposes the government clearly in all its monumental incompetence, hypocrisy, and abuse of authority — the event that pushes the public over the edge and makes people more angry than they are afraid. But, the events that follow this moment will bring more death and misery, regardless of which spark caused it. The people in Venezuela know this, viscerally, and yet many (most?) are ready to “bite the bullet” and accept the consequences in order to get it over with and start rebuilding. Many people outside don’t seem to understand exactly how far gone is the situation here.

    I am beginning to see this stark dichotomy, between the CC readers who are here, and those outside. No amount of reading the news or even talking with your family will convey to you the sense of frustration and hopelessness that pervades Venezuela today.


  14. I find it interesting that in 2010 the government bought over 2 billion dollars worth of gas turbines for the country and many of them are sitting on the sites with grass growing around them. Several are broken due to no parts or tools to fix them. But yet just down the road they are making new electrical stations, curroption maybe? Having worked there and seeing this first hand it’s unbelievable to see new equipment not being utilized or not maitained.


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