Community Update

World Pulse Toolkits Available!

At World Pulse, we recognize the need for ongoing learning—for you and for your community! Our toolkits are all available here.

We are especially excited to share our signature Citizen Journalism and Digital Empowerment Curriculum. Start learning today!

Election Day in Bolivia

The new Biometric National Listing has reached an all time high number of voters, as 5.1 million people have been registered in the new listings. The percentage of growth in the occidental part of Bolivia (Evo Morales’s big voters) has grown only 18% while the oriental part of the country, voting against Morales, has grown 44%, according to Equipo Mori Consultancy Agency.

What does this mean? Morales has faced many accusations of bringing people from outside the country to register and vote for him in the oriental part of Bolivia. If this is true, the above numbers mean he will be winning the election in the regions where he previously used to lose. The national tendency, declared also by Equipo Mori, is that Morales will win by 53%.

In previous elections he lost in the oriental region and only got 30% there. If the conspiracy theory is correct, this time he will reach more than 50% in this region too (due to the big increase in the number of voters). This way he will keep all the power to himself and his party for the next five years, which added to the four he just finished make nine years of Evo’s ruling time.

This is important because winning this way he will be able to keep two thirds of the Senate and the Deputy Chamber for his party, leading to a complete use of power for his party. This also means nobody will stop him from really converting Bolivia into a socialist country, where democracy is understood as the right to elect between two or more people that belong to the same governing party.

He promised his people that his party will keep the power to themselves forever. He promised them a complete change and people are voting for him trusting that he will fulfill this promise. The new Constitution approved by him and his party after a handful of deaths and hundreds of injured people, took only two days to be approved by a Constitutional Assembly that had more than two thirds voting in his favor.

People know that this will also be the case of every law he wants to pass after tomorrow, in cases of winning in the whole country by more than 50%. Many people have gathered around his leadership leaving behind their former right wing orientation, and begin fighting internally for state jobs, which have covered all areas by now, including the production and commercialization of basic food products.

The other work area that has risen silently is the coca leave farming, which will continue to be supported by his government. Morales is the visionary of Socialism of the 21st century, who will turn coca leaves into a non prohibited item globally, supporting its use for medicine and for social consumption, not for serving as the main component of cocaine.

All allegations against him are denied completely by Morales’s Ministers and he expects to have at least 80% of the voting. This will be historical. I will be covering every aspect of the voting today, so come by for new updates.

Downloads

Comments

Sagiia's picture

Many Qs

This article is very interesting and leaves me with many questions as I know little of modern day politics in Bolivia.

Biometric National Listing? Do people have to be fingerprinted, eye scan?

Definition of socialism? I need to learn more about this. Here in the states, in current times, I understand socialism to mean programs that are for the social welfare of all, and although it is a dirty word to some, for me it is usually a positive thing. But I think I do not have a true understanding of the word, just a sense of how it has been misused here by right wing politicians to make a progressive program seem evil. If what it really means is to have only one party elections like was the policy in USSR, is that communism or just a case of how communism was corrupted, and is that really socialism? If so, perhaps we already have a socialist government here in the US since although we have 2 parties, dems and Republicans, they are really one party, bought and paid for and controlled by the mega corporations. I am confused. Very!

Sagiia's picture

Oops! I wasn't quite finished.

So, this Evo Morales, is he at all interested in what is best for the common people of Bolivia, or is he and his government all about greed and the amassing of power?

Is his vision for coca farming and use becoming legal worldwide necessarily a bad thing? Perhaps as with the argument for alcohol and marijuana it could make for safer product, and eliminate the criminal element, the violence, the corruption. Put these drug cartels out of business. Or is he involved in the illegal trade already?

Please forgive me if my Qs are ignorant or naive. I really want to understand.

Thank you, Sagiia

Sagiia's picture

Oops! I wasn't quite finished.

So, this Evo Morales, is he at all interested in what is best for the common people of Bolivia, or is he and his government all about greed and the amassing of power?

Is his vision for coca farming and use becoming legal worldwide necessarily a bad thing? Perhaps as with the argument for alcohol and marijuana it could make for safer product, and eliminate the criminal element, the violence, the corruption. Put these drug cartels out of business. Or is he involved in the illegal trade already?

Please forgive me if my Qs are ignorant or naive. I really want to understand.

Thank you, Sagiia

jap21's picture

Depends

I think he is basically interested on what is best for the common people of Bolivia, but there is a need for word by the opposition, otherwise this government could turn totalitarian.
Right now the facts are: He won by 63%, he has more than two thirds in both chambers and he is still single, hehe.

About economy, I personally have not found investments made in industries, and private small businesses are a wreck mostly, but somehow (I don't know how, really) we are in good shape, with a lot of money (more than ever before) in the Central Bank of Bolivia.

Most of the new jobs are in the field of politics. Common people get paid to do all kinds of jobs for the government. We have a former secretary in an industrial firm serving as Industry Minister, for instance. Quite a change.

But people are happy like this, so it is OK. I don´t want to be judgemental, I give him the credit of the doubt. We shall see hat happens by the end of this second term with him.

He is already considering the law that will not allow journalists to "tell lies" about his government, as he considers worthy journalists are the ones who "are with the process of change". So I must be very careful not to misinterpret his deeds, otherwise my speech could be considered a lie, and groups who work with grassroots people could very unkindly let me know what I must not write about, hehe.

All I want to say is I am a warrior for freedom of speech, so I will keep writing, as objectively as possible.

Love,

Jackie

Jacqueline Patiño FundActiva
Tarija - Bolivia
South America
www.jap21.wordpress.com

Sagiia's picture

Thank you for taking the time

Thank you for taking the time to answer my Qs. Politics are complicated, aren't they? Usually I do not get too involved, but I am interested in how is life for the people of Bolivia and everywhere for that matter. Bolivia is interesting to me from the history I remember from junior high school: the revolucion, Simon Bolivar, and LaPaz. What a beautiful name for your capital, something which I hope inspires the people and the leaders of your country. I understand that things can be seen very differently by the citizens of a country than the impression we get here through the media and our school textbooks. And also if I asked many different people of Bolivia, I would surely get many different perspectives just as everyone here has very different opinions of what is going on in the US and the world.

I swore that if Obama lost the election here I would move to Venezuela. I like Chavez, perhaps mostly because he stood up to Bush. Reallly besides that I don't know too much about him. I have heard a little about some social programs he has started and that he took governmental ownership of the oil from the international corporations, but he has used the profits to better the life of the people. I am sure that made the corporations very angry, but I think it is a good thing. Why should these multi-national corporations be allowed to rape the land of its resources, pollute it so people can no longer live sustainably, and steal all the profits? I think it was a good thing he did, even heroic, but maybe I know and understand too little. I met a woman here from Venezuela who did not like Chavez but I did not get the opportunity to ask her why.

The best way to know how it is in another country is to visit or live there. We cannot trust our media to present an accurate understanding. If we cannot do that then the next best thing is to hear directly from people living there. That is why I am so glad to have you for a friend and so glad that you will continue to be a warrior for freedom of speech.

Keep on writing brave and kind friend!

Love, Sagiia

Sagiia's picture

Oops! I forgot something again.

I wanted to add that I will keep the beautiful people of Bolivia and you in my prayers that any changes that happen there will happen in a good and peaceful way and will be for the benefit of all the good people there. Vive La Paz!

jap21's picture

Thanks Sagiia

One could say that most of the people in any country will want the same thing, but reality shows us that it doesn´t work that way. This is the reason why there are those who believe in Chavez, Evo, Correa, Noriega and such, while there are others who don´t believe in them.

There are good things that Chavez does, as well as there are good things that Evo does, and that cannot be denied. But, I don´t agree the fact that they find themselves (or so they say) in the need of doing this through jailing their opposition or through beating up disidents, as it has become quite common in all these countries.

If what they do is good enough, then nothing journalists say or nothing disidents do will take them away from power. I am worried to find out why they are so afraid of freedom of speech. Might be because they respond to all questions with clichés, jingles and slogans tailored for winning elections? I don´t know. What I do know for sure is that real leaders are experts, so they do not fear to give opinions, to discuss ideas and to socialize their plans.

About legalizing dope, I think it would be nice. This way producing countries would get better prices for it. Americans in general use it, so I am guessing the legal importation of marihuana and cocaine would really put a balance between our economies. This means that for x amount of US computers sold in Bolivia, we could sell x amount of legalized drugs in the US. Wouldn´t that be awesome?

Thanks for wishing Bolivians well. I also pray every day that nothing bad will happen to us. Socialism predicts that change can only come through revolutions where people from the ruling oppressing rich party die, killed by the poor. I hope we can beat that terrible death sentence and prove that this can be done peacefully.

Socialism is something we must study very carefully before embracing or rejecting it. As you have read in my article, we are copycats, and when we copycat wrong seeds, we reap violence and death. Let us embrace the best of socialism: the egalitarian distribution of wealth, meaning we will all be richer, not that we will all be poorer.

As you can see, discussions in this community are friendly and there is always someone who will add to them. I don´t always respond in such long paragraphs, but I want to take the time to get to know you better.

Love,

Jackie

Jacqueline Patiño FundActiva
Tarija - Bolivia
South America
www.jap21.wordpress.com

Sagiia's picture

OOPS again!

I just noticed your response to my previous post after I had already posted The Kidnapping of Haiti. So sorry if anything in there seems to ignore what you had written. I just hadn't read it yet.

Thank you again for taking the time to respond so fully to my Qs. I am glad to know more fully about the governments of both Evo and Chavez. I agree that true leaders of the people should not need to jail, abuse or intimidate in anyway their opposition. I am not excusing it in anyway, what is wrong is wrong, but perhaps it comes because of the outside influence and threats from US, or the mega corporations that control US politics and want to control all the wealth of the 3rd world countries too. When I look at the history of democratically elected leaders that have been overthrown by US backed groups, the list is quite long. LaMumba of Belgian Congo, the Sandanistas in Nicaragua, Aristide in Haiti, most recently in Hondras, and these are just the ones I am sure of. It would make it hard to lead in a country and try to stand up for your people against the US or it's corporations. As a leader it would be very hard to know who you could trust. If I remember correctly LaMumba was betrayed by one of his former best friends. Not an excuse for the behaviors, but an explanation maybe for the atmosphere of paranoia.

I don't know. I am finding that the more I open my eyes to what is going on in the world, the more disheartened I become. I am losing faith. I like what you said about embracing the best of socialism but studying it carefully first. And I love your copycat idea. How do we get our societies to copycat the good seed and not the violent ones?

By the way, most politicians here in the US also "respond to all questions with clichés, jingles and slogans tailored for winning elections." Obama was an exception to that rule. It is why I had high hopes for him. But now I do not know......

Sorry if I am a bit depressing this evening.

Love to you, your family and the people of Bolivia,
Sagiia

Sagiia's picture

The Kidnapping of Haiti

I just read the following in an article entitled "The Kidnapping of Haiti" by John Pilger. Here is the link for the whole article. http://www.johnpilger.com/page.asp?partid=564

"Not for tourists is the US building its fifth biggest embassy in Port-au-Prince. Oil was found in Haiti’s waters decades ago and the US has kept it in reserve until the Middle East begins to run dry. More urgently, an occupied Haiti has a strategic importance in Washington’s “rollback” plans for Latin America. The goal is the overthrow of the popular democracies in Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador, control of Venezuela’s abundant oil reserves and sabotage of the growing regional cooperation that has given millions their first taste of an economic and social justice long denied by US-sponsored regimes.

The first rollback success came last year with the coup against President Jose Manuel Zelaya in Honduras who also dared advocate a minimum wage and that the rich pay tax. Obama’s secret support for the illegal regime carries a clear warning to vulnerable governments in central America. Last October, the regime in Colombia, long bankrolled by Washington and supported by death squads, handed the US seven military bases to, according to US air force documents, “combat anti-US governments in the region”.

Media propaganda has laid the ground for what may well be Obama’s next war. On 14 December, researchers at the University of West England published first findings of a ten-year study of the BBC’s reporting of Venezuela. Of 304 BBC reports, only three mentioned any of the historic reforms of the Chavez government, while the majority denigrated Chavez’s extraordinary democratic record, at one point comparing him to Hitler."

Sagiia writing again: I found this all very interesting, more evidence that the US is trying to imperialize the world and not caring the cost to the people of the 3rd world. So disheartening. I had so much hope that it would be different under the leadership of President Obama, but recently I am forced to see more and more that nothing has changed. The billion dollar multi-national corporations are who is really running everything and our US Presidents are only their puppets. Have you heard Jackie about the recent ridiculous ruling of our Supreme Court which gives corporations the same rights to free speech as human citizens but does not hold them accountable to punishment for their crimes like citizens? This ruling gives the corporations the right to spend unlimited amounts to directly influence the outcome of elections. I feel democracy is already a lost cause here. What we have now is just a sham. It is only capitalism, and the mega-giant corporations are king. They have only to fight amongst themselves how to divide the power and the incredible wealth they have amassed. God help anyone who gets in the way.

Forgive me but at the moment I feel quite disillusioned and down hearted about it all.

Love to you, Sagiia

jap21's picture

I understand

It is sad to know these things are quite common. It is the beginning of the week and I must work, although I would love to stay here and keep our conversation going. One of these nights, when I can´t sleep, I will come back here to chat with you some more about this very interesting topics.

Thanks for coming by, dear Sagiia. Wish the best to you too. Deep inside, I know there is hope. I have acquired a non refundable amount of optimism! (silly me) haha

Hugs honey,

Jackie

Jacqueline Patiño FundActiva
Tarija - Bolivia
South America
www.jap21.wordpress.com

Magazine »

Read global coverage through women's eyes

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Community »

Connect with women on the ground worldwide

Mkandeh's picture

Ebola: Sierra Leoneans feel like prisoners

Campaigns »

Be heard at influential forums

WWW: Women Weave the Web

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Programs »

Help us train women citizen journalists

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

Blog »

Read the latest from World Pulse headquarters

EMAGAZINE: Bridging Borders

EMAGAZINE: Bridging Borders

Partners »

Join forces with our wide network of partners

Nobel Women's Initiative

Nobel Women's Initiative