Manfredo Kempff writes in El Diario:
The Bolivia that they will leave
When this Government leave (all Governments will someday) we will be an invertebrate, dismantled nation, in a deep social crisis, as feared by Ortega of the Spain of the first third of the last century, which had lost its last overseas possessions and which lack of a capable ruling class to remedy all that disaster.
The relationship of the Spain of Ortega, with the current Bolivia is not comparable because there were different, particular circumstances of each people, although some such as regionalism, social unrest or the “rule of the masses”, could resemble. But, anyway, the decomposition which has been reached in Bolivia (as announced by the defunct Cayetano Llobet) is something that should trouble us much because at this rate there won’t be nation to govern.
This “govern with the people” that announces H.E. [his excellency] is the vertex where the most dangerous of the present situation prospects are generated. Not precisely because they now govern with the people, but because people believe that they are ruling. And as they have him believe that he is ruling, they rebel if he does not meet their demands and will stand demanding the impossible with violence or taking it by force.
We know that “govern with the people” is a lie, but it is a lie that serves – and much – to current Government. Never they are going to ask the people what they should do. In addition, how would they ask? With permanent referendums? That people have their representatives in the Legislative Assembly, in the governorates and municipalities, which have earned their positions by the vote or have been made alive by force, by the ruling party [imposed]. But those people do not govern but dutifully obey everything H.E. says.
We are then in a crossroads from which we will regret later, because we have entered a cheating system, where the ruling makes what he wants and says he is doing it by obeying the masses. There is never a popular initiative that is not previously rigged from the central power. Political operatives acting on behalf of the people and hence arise the most implausible initiatives.
It has become a habit of this vicious system which calls for nationalizations, provision of healthy lands, construction of roads by convenience, creation of universities, bridges by the dozen, airports, new educational systems, overlapping racist laws, new symbols, new dates for joy, and locks, parapets and trenches on roads, which almost always enforced using directives from above which in turn produced joy in the masses and curiously more popularity in the Government. Hence, find it incomprehensible how after every sovereign nonsense, when any responsible administration would have to roll heads, in Bolivia it is celebrated with music, dancing and drunkenness.
This policy has a very high cost, because to trick the people it governs, to convince them that there is change and revolution, they spent lots of money on entertainment and propaganda and very little is invested in production; the laws that protect the citizen are violated and is only obeyed what sends power; imposing violent smuggling which destroys the formal trade and tolerated the large coca crops; it debases politics and the public service as a true plague; education falls and accommodates her at the time of the change; is taught a new liar and fraught history of resentment; replaced the Catholic creeds by rites of ancestral doubtful authenticity; used extortion as a method to destroy the enemies; it discredits the freedom of expression and it punishes those who think in a different way; It spreads the insecurity by existing permits; and wake up regionalism which were asleep. [in sum they are destroying who we are as a nation]
An example among hundreds that we see every month, is the conflict that happens today in the region of San Julián, Santa Cruz, where they have blocked the road to Beni for a week because some exalted mob requires the creation of the Faculty of the Northeast, although with a confused idea of what they want. San Julian is not only a necessary step to the Department of Beni but to the rich agricultural areas of Santa Cruz Chiquitania. Because these aspiring University students, future professionals, in an absolute demonstration of savagery, have beaten mercilessly to the police, torture and extort passengers and carriers who want to travel, but will achieve, with certainty, the Santa Cruz University to finance this useless project.
To subjects of this nature, which have announced a looming vigil around the University Council of the UGRM, on their decision, in any other civilized country they will not build them a college but a rehabilitation center. That is what we see every day and that is what will endure in the country, in the Bolivia of the change, except for a miracle.
I fully agree with Manfredo, for quite sometime now, I believe that if current gov were to abandon this day, it would take us at least 50 years to rebuild everything… and I am more worried by interaction among ourselves, let alone the economics and composition of the public service structure… unfortunately this government has managed to destroy any empathy, tolerance between the people from the west (collas) versus the east (cambas), rich vs poor, urban vs rural and so on… the damage is there and it is up to us to stop this nonsense next year. NO to the illegitimate re-re-election of the worst Bolivian central government ever!!!