Archive for October 22nd, 2005

Factoids about the proposed 2006 budget

October 22, 2005

–It is the largest budget in the country’s history both as a
percentage of GDP (35%) or in absolute terms in US$ at US$ 40.46

–It is six times larger in local currency than Chavez first budget in 1999.

–It assumes oil prices of US$ 26 with production of 3.4 million
barrels of oil a day (dream on!). In any case, the reason for
underestimating is simple, money to the regional Governments is given
out in terms of expected revenues. Thus, they will get less than what
the law says. (What else is new?)

–Funding for housing is budgeted at Bs. 205 billion (US$ 95 million),
while Presidential Expenses are budgeted at Bs. 243 billion (US$ 110
million), up 72%. I guess he has to pay too many $4800 a night suites
to go to useless summits,
like he did in Salamanca. Yes, it is bad being rich!

–Tax collection will come from Indirect Taxes 76.5% (US$ 12.6
billion), corporate taxes 21.8% (US$ 3.59 billion) and personal taxes
1.7% (US$ 283 million), which shows what a terrible tax system we have,
where most taxes are collected from everyone via the VAT tax, but
personal taxes are tiny. Is this fair? I don’t think so,
but it is easier to collect it thus way. Revolutionary!

–The Ministry of Defense will get Bs. 3.81 trillion (US$ 1.77 billion),
continuing a long tradition of buying expensive and useless toys for men
who have no idea how to use them and will likely not mantain them at
all. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

–US$ 6 billion will be spent via the newly created Development Fund
(Foden). None of it is specified in the budget. You could call it
Chavez’ petty cash fund.


A variety of flowers

October 22, 2005

Top left: Brassia Datacosta (Brassia Edvah Loo x 
Longissima)  Top Right: I don’t have too many Phalenopsis, but
they keep flowering beautifully as if to change my mind.

Left: Cattelya Gaskelliana Blue Dragon x self. The purple color is
absolutely outstanding. It opened yesterday, it may have been premature
to take the picture. Right: This plant was sold to me as Brassovola
Digbyana, but onetime I posted it and someone said it was a hybrid Blc.
Aristocrat. In any case, the Brassavolas are now known asRhyncholaelias as botanists keep changing names to challenge my memory.

Chavista ochlocracy attempts to assault Petkoff

October 22, 2005

A group from the Chavista ochlocracy attempted to assault
Editor Teodoro Petkoff as he was beginning to present his book “The Two
Lefts” in the Eastern city of Maturin. Petkoff has been going around
the country in what is clearly a tour to measure whether he should run
or not for President in 2006.

The mob of 30 Chavistas apparently sent by the Chavista Mayor of
Maturin entered the building where the presentation was to take place
with shouts and pushing people around. A radio announcer for a local
radio station was injured. The group was led by MVR councilman Eulogio
Santana. They accused Petkoff of playing a role in the April 11 2002
events.Petkoff said this is the first time in his tour around Venezuela
that this has happened. The police showed up, calm prevailed on the
part of those attending and the presentation was succesfully completed.

Once again, intolerant and fascist Chavista groups attempt to block
others from exercizing their rights for the only reason that they
disagree with them.

What else is new in this fake revolution?