To a Voter by Javier Brassesco

August 11, 2004

I thought I would translate this letter to a voter by Javier Brassesco that appeared in today’s El Universal, we all have such lists and reasons, here is one of them:

To a Voter by Javier Brassesco


Has your purchasing power improved in the last five and a half years? Do you think there is more prosperity, more employment, more wealth, and more possibilities of improvement? Do you think that people that want to leave the country are more or less than five years ago? Are there more factories open that some years ago? Are there more street peddlers or less? Is your city cleaner than five years ago? Has the number of people asking for money at street corners, sleeping in the streets, rummaging in the garbage, increased or decreased? Did you use to see kids juggling in streetlights before? Do you feel safer when you used to at night? Do you think that living with your neighbors, family, and friends is more harmonious than before? Are you less edgy or more edgy? Does politics have something to do with that? Do you think corruption has decreased? Do you think the oil windfall of the last five years, unprecedented in the country, has been used effectively? Do you think that five and a half years, one hundred and twenty billion dollars per year are a reasonable time and amount so that a Government only begins to pave streets only just when an election is approaching? Is it legal for a regime to use the money it receives from all Venezuelans to launch a campaign in its favor and cover up all of the streets and walls of the country with poster promoting the “No” vote? Do you know how much each poster costs? How about each one of those TV ads and each one of those paid ads?  Or do you believe they are getting that money form the raffle tickets at Bs.1,000 per ticket? Does the President have the morals to speak about “powerful enemies” and with a lot of money? Who in this oil producing country has more money than the Government itself? Who has less scruples when it comes time to waste money? Do you think it is correct, do you believe it is the most natural thing in the world to order all TV channels broadcast the celebration of your birthday? How big an ego does someone need to be capable of doing that? What does he have in his head? Do you agree when he presents the Government’s TV channel as an example of objective reporting? Did you know that that TV station is not private, nor does it belong to whoever is in power, but that we all pay for it? Do you trust the people that surround the President? What do you think about Jose Vicente Rangel? Does Diosdado Cabello have merits to be where he is? And Jesse Chacon? Have you ever heard of Lucas Rincon? Would you buy a used car from Juan Barreto? Have you seen a debate in the National Assembly? Do you think it has given dignity to the profession of being a Deputy? Does the President have more or less power than before? Is this a moment for apathy to say: “Neither these, nor the others, all are bad”? Isn’t it something normal in a democracy to elect between two alternatives that do not fulfill us completely? Have you ever thought that sometimes to elect, you also need courage?

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