Excerpts of column Runrunes (Rumors) of December 18
Contrary to what was spread in social networks, no tubes have been put into Chávez and no screws have been adjusted in his weakened vertebrae
THE PATIENT. After the timely startup with bulletins read out in compulsory simultaneous broadcasts by Minister of Communication and Information Ernesto Villegas, on Saturday and Sunday the truth would be masked again for us. Minister of Science and Technology Jorge Arreaza told us he had spoken with his father in law (President Hugo Chávez) quite a few times; that he had made appeals for unity and voting and even sent his regards to the attendants at the Alba Summit, let alone that Fidel Castro visited him in sickbed. Visits are banned at Cimeq intensive care unit. Only his closest relatives have come in his cubicle to see him. The trumpeted visits by presidents have been declined until further notice. Having moved to his room, the president was somewhat quieter; there, his family could share more time with him. Ups and downs in his recovery included bleeding confirmed and conceded in the official notice, respiratory disturbances, going in and out a coma, and continued pain in the areas hit by the disease. For the time being, he cannot talk. However, contrary to what was spread in social networks, no tubes have been put into him and no screws have been adjusted in his weakened vertebrae. While Arreaza told white lies, the extreme untruth of ex candidate for Amazonas state governor Nicia Maldonado won the prize. She reasserted that she had seen a picture of the president standing up and getting well. Such an outrageous remark led Vice-President Nicolás Maduro issue a notice. "We have not directly contacted him," he said, and promised to bring information "as soon as it is available." Well done!
That political protest in Venezuela has lost momentum seems pretty obvious: people are no longer building barricades to block off streets near Plaza Francia in Altamira (eastern Caracas), an anti-government stronghold; no new images have been shown of brave and dashing protesters with bandanna-covered faces clashing with the National Guard in San Cristóbal, in the western state of Táchira; and those who dreamed of a horde of "Gochos" (Tachirans) descending in an avalanche to stir up revolt in Caracas have been left with no option but to wake up to reality.