Monday, 24 May 2010

Why is the opposition in such a position? 2

Comes from here

Opposition politician Julio Borges keeps talking about private property time after time. He is right to be worried about it. He is right to say private property is also a concern for the poor as they also want to have their house, they also want to set up their business.

What Borges is not getting is the fact that he will be more concerned about private property than the vast majority of Venezuelans, even if private property concerns everybody. Why?

1) most poor, even if they do aspire to own a house and set up a little business, do not get the way Borges is explaining things. Borges simply does not connect.
2) most poor actually don't even hear PJ because PJ does not get out of the Caracas-Miranda region plus a couple of other big urban centres (lack of money, threats and attacks from the regime's police and other thugs, bad logistics, little knowledge of non-central areas from the very urbanite Primero Justicia members)
3) a very good half of the population does NOT see that as a main concern, even if they should. The reason is they do have other very top priorities that the opposition top is failing to address.
What are those things? Just a couple of a dozen:

1) education: most Venezuelans send their children to very bad free state schools, not very posh private schools as the Chavista top honchos or the oppo leaders do. On top of that they have to pay an amount per child per year that is equivalent to or higher than a worker's monthly salary. PJ and others need to give very concrete ideas about what they are going to do regarding PRIMARY and SECONDARY education: free textbooks as in the US, participation in open evaluation tests as PISA, transparency and betterment of teacher's conditions, more competition to attract the best.

2) job creation for those older than 40 years old: believe it or not, in Venezuela few have a chance to get a proper job after they are 40, specially if they are unskilled workers. The opposition needs to offer sustainable solutions in the form of decent jobs to these people.

3) land ownership in suburban or rural areas: Venezuela needs to establish an online cadaster of all rural properties firstly. This will hurt a lot of big owners -both Chavistas and non-Chavistas, but this will also bring clarity on property claims and all the rest. The vast majority of Venezuelans living outside the main 3 cities are living above ground that belongs to the state and/or is claimed by other people (if you speak Spanish, it is worth checking out this article on the governmental expropiations in rural areas).

4) security: The opposition has addressed the issue of security, but it hasn't done it in a proper way; people hear all the time about the increase in crime, they feel it, they know things are much much worse now, but the vast majority of Venezuelans -unlike Borges- have never been outside Venezuela and they don't know how things are outside their country.

Here you see the percentage of people who voted for PJ when electing the governor for rural Cojedes state. The best results were in the municipality where San Carlos, the main city, is located.

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