Hugo Chavez: Bolivarian Rabo ‘e Paja

President Hugo Chavez has exempted Caracas from the four-hour rolling power blackouts being imposed every other day everywhere else in Venezuela.

Caracas was excluded from the plan because it was having “undesired effects and technical problems,” Chavez explained, adding however that the plan is working in the interior.

The 6 million-plus residents of greater Caracas will be spared any hardship. But the rest of the country gets screwed.

For good measure, Chavez also fired recently appointed Power Minister Angel Rodriguez for, essentially, obeying the president’s orders last October that power consumption must be reduced immediately and power conservation must be enforced.

But Chavez did not mention the Edelca report that forecasts “national collapse in 120 days.”

“Undesired effects and technical problems” is Chavez’s way of admitting that frustrated Caracas residents were infuriated – and this terrifies the president.

The public’s rage is palpable everywhere in the streets of Caracas, but particularly in the “barrios” where there is a huge reservoir of “pueblo” power capable of setting the capital city ablaze if a spark flares at the wrong moment.

President Chavez, a loudmouthed bully with raisin-sized “cojones” who blusters and threatens while hiding behind phalanxes of armed Cuban thugs, is genuinely terrified of the potential wrath of a betrayed “pueblo” fed up with his criminal ways and gangster cronies.

Remember how Chavez bunkered deep inside Miraflores palace on 11 April 2002, surrounding himself with some 1,500 National Guard troops and thousands of armed civilian followers? Remember how Chavez ordered a massive slaughter that day, and when his homicidal designs were foiled immediately went into flight mode, offering to resign provided that he was allowed to leave Venezuela with his family and $10 million in cash? Chavez has always been a coward when the going gets rough.

Predictably, fear drove Chavez to exempt Caracas from the rolling power cuts and fire Power Minister Rodriguez. “He took it like a good soldier,” Chavez said last night. In fact, Rodriguez was delighted by his abrupt dismissal, sources close to the former minister tell Caracas Gringo. Rodriguez privately thinks “El Comandante” is nuts, the sources add.

Caracas now is exempted from the programmed power outages. Perhaps Chavez thinks the political pressures have eased. But he’s wrong.

Edelca’s report was very clear: power consumption must be cut by 1,600 MW immediately or else Venezuela confronts “national collapse” – i.e. lights out – by end-April. The basic industries in Guayana consume 1,840 MW of Edelca’s power, Caracas consumes 1,600 MW and Zulia consumes 1,450 MW.

If Chavez intends to spare Caracas, where else can he make the needed cuts in power use?

The basic industries already cut power use by 559 MW – concentrated at Sidor, Venalum and Alcasa. But at least another 1,000 MW at these three state-owned companies could be reduced by shutting them down completely. Ciudad Guayana has a “residential load” of 540 MW spread between San Felix (200 MW) and Puerto Ordaz (340 MW). But power outages already are daily events in Ciudad Guayana. Still, Chavez is a leader who has no qualms about betraying his closest followers, and Ciudad Guayana is a long way from Caracas.

Chavez also could cut power supplies to Zulia, which consumes 1,450 MW of Edelca’s hydro-power. Chavez doesn’t like Zulia anyway. Of course, if Chavez trims power supplies to Zulia it’s certain that Pdvsa’s crude oil production operations will be affected too. A steep drop in Zulia’s crude oil production would hurt Pdvsa’s export revenues, thus reducing the regime’s fiscal income too. But Chavez probably isn’t thinking clearly right now. Fright always makes bullies freeze like a deer caught in the headlights of a speeding truck.


About Caracas Gringo

Representing less than 0.00000000001515152% of the world population as of 31 December 2011.
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7 Responses to Hugo Chavez: Bolivarian Rabo ‘e Paja

  1. SOB says:

    This government, according to Murphy´s laws will be politically obliterated by a power shortage just a couple of months months before a crucial election takes place.It reminds me of Wily Coyote, who always comes up with incredibly sophisticated schemes and gadgets to entrap the roadrunner and yet, for all his smarts always gets stuck on the reailroad track in time to be run over by a roaring train.Priceless.


  2. CuervoBlanco says:

    Funny, in 2003 Guri reached its lowest historical level of just a mere 243,5 meters of water. Rationing was contemplated but never done/needed. Now Guri is well above that level and rationing is a reality.

    Ive triend to find Edelca reports and only found a glimpse on page 2 of this document.


  3. Juan says:

    Planta Centro is merely a glaring example of an endemic problem that started the moment Chavez came to power. That is, the capacity for the public sector to maintain anything whatsoever got lost in the euphoria of booting the old guard out and empowering those who previously were the disposable, superflous, throw-aways of the nation (to put it bluntly). It was a heady and wonderful thing, in a sense, that power shifted hands. But Chavez and his rapidly diminishing league of friends and confidants forgot one crucial thing: You absolutly have to reatin a percentage of people who are actually capible of DOING something (like maintaining the goddam bombas in a refinery), those doing the heavy lifting. In his mania to cury loyalty, Chavez ran out of town most of those with the actual wherewithal to maintain and run the country. Now he has a bunch of yahoos in red shirts picking their noses and yapping about El Revolution even as the pipes rust.

    It’s a simple but unavoidable truth – you MUST keep people on board who have the discipline and the skill to do the job. The power problem can only worsen because even if we got 1,000 meters of rain manana, the grid has been so poorly maintained that even if we had the raw power, there’s no way to distribute it. It’s like trying to wash a car with a leaky hose. Carnk up the water pressure and things only get worse. Likewise, with virtually every domain that has fallen into the “public sector,” or which is government controlled, the problems have so compounded they now approch critical mass. Basically, even if viable solutions could be drawn up, there is no means of implimenting same. And once the military starts feeling the pinch, this could get volatile rather quickly.

    Hold on.



  4. CuervoBlanco says:

    That plant must be completely demolished and rebuilt again as you said. And about that last thing on the oil refineries if Planta Centro is already at the brink of a potentially tragic ending, It feels kind of eerie to picture a catalitic cracking tower, for example, blowing up and engulfing El Palito in a fireball.


  5. Gringo says:

    Is Planta Centro still in disrepair?


    • CuervoBlanco says:

      I honestly dont believe at all, counting on our current government, that these images of planta centro have gotten any better. Just take a look at this pictures gringo. Some engineer made this MSN space and made public about 200 phtographs. Its horrible.


    • Gringo says:

      Yes, Devil’s had a link to a similar set of photos a while back. The link was also put into the comments here. Those photos are definitely an example of how not to maintain machinery. Heads should have rolled for those who let them fall into such a state. Given the petrobonanza of the last 10 years makes this even more of a disgrace. Funds available for routine maintenance were frittered away on other pet projects or corruption, perhaps for Missions Impossible.

      But this is par for the course, under He who wants to control everything but assume responsibility for nothing. PDVSA facilities have been tending in that direction for years, I am told.


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