Around the corner from the habitation module is a Frente Amplio clubhouse. A neighbor relayed to me that on election night they were in the right place at the right time to see a crow of derp pour out in anger. The derps proceeded to the nearest dumpster where they proceeded to... systematically and impotently remove garbage and place it outside of the dumpster. Not even, try to burn the dumpster... just take the trash an put it somewhere else. When I walked past the aftermath later that night I just thought it was an especially inconsiderate trash miner. As it was the night the trash trucks were scheduled to come by later anyways, all evidence of the incredibly impotent protest failed to endure as far into the future as the next morning.
Lets look at the inner workings of this fountain of Butthurt.
The Frente Amplio
Bald yuppie social democrat/democratic socialist Daniel Martinez "won" with just a smidge over 40 percent of the vote. Carolina Cosse came narrowly into second through support from Mujica's MPP faction over the third place finisher from El Partido Comunista de Uruguay, a bearded hipster who calls himself Óscar Andrade. Everyone else trailed these three substantially.
These three flavors of socialism vary in their marketing and their desired ends.
- Martinez and the sitting two time president Tabaré Vázquez favor a Nordic Socialism that enters into a polite stagnation where everything is shit, but anyone who could object has long fucked off to anywhere else. This sector isn't afraid of invoking the Christian thing when it comes to justifying Pantsuist Puritanisms. They just engage in obscene levels of Gymnastics to make shit fit. Martinez cast his own ballot at a polling place located near 21 de Setiembre1 and Bulevard España in the ambiguously "is this block Pocitos, Punta Carretas, or a forgettable pocket barrio" ritzy for Uruguay zone.
- Mujica runs the MPP which supported Cosse's run, but didn't extend support to the post voting vice-presidential candidate selection process. The MPP's ideology might be likened to anarcho-communism, but in practice in appears to actually materialize in a veneration of "just scraping by" as an activity. Carve outs and programs to benefit the not necessarily idle, but definitely not being employed at substantial expenses in time and treasure to "service" incredibly small niches characterize MPP positions.
- El Partido Communista - The traditional "labor is sacred" party with its own local twists. Growth appears to be driven by not unjustified perception by los trabajadores that the MPP is more interested in vagrant interests than their own. Strict view of economics as zero sum and singular focus on getting a bigger piece of the pie for the trabajadores even if the pie shrinks to nothing.
Since Martinez won with a plurality and not a majority, his very recently announced vice-presidential pick will wear the pre-candidate label through the FA's convention. At some earlier plenary, the FA decided at least one person on top of their ticket must be a woman. This naturally would have suggested Cosse as the second place finisher and only FA woman running for the slot, except her brand is sufficiently toxic the MPP would not endorse her as vice president despite giving her a presidential campaign apparatus. In an apparent joke, the Partido Communista immediately turned around and endorsed her.
Martinez ended up yesterday picking complete unknown Graciela Villar has choice for running mate, if the Frente will allow him to do so. The rumors that Villar is just an established FA minister in drag are already circulating (archived). Provided they don't split over their differences, the FA will be carrying the advantage of Uruguay being a mandatory voting country into the general election. A split in the FA is not out of the question in the near to mid term as the self-identifying Left continues to accumulate resentments.
The National Party
Luis Lacalle Pou won a clear majority in the National Party internal giving he a free hand moving forward. He was the most voted candidate between all of the parties by a very wide margin. During his victory speech, he exercised his free hand to declare Beatriz Argimón his running mate. Beatriz is a long haired blond woman who appears to my eye to carry herself in the manner of an adult woman in contrast to the old/fat/Merkel gendered hags of the FA like Cosse and Villar.
The postcount party the Blancos held was a big show of party unity and included calls for the rest of the opposition to join in defeating the FA to save Uruguay. Little time was spent on the platform of "shocks" that won him the nomination. Herrerismo, the small country stay in our lane but defend the hell out of it nationalism, is dominating the actual conversations between Uruguayos. Why wouldn't it be when Uruguay's most important economic metric, the market value of agricultural fields, has been falling since 2014.
Yet in spite of unity in the National Party, newcomer and distant second place figure Juan Sartori has simultaneously gone on vacation and tilt at the same time. This man who had the appeal of spending time living outside Uruguay and building businesses inside and outside Uruguay in the end leaned too hard on the impulse to insulate himself from the Uruguayos in favor of dropping pronouncements from on high. This continued thrashing is likely to be a fountain of lulz for the forseeable future. In the interim the local rags are talking about Sartori voters as though they are a unified "sector" in the manner of the MPP or PCU.
For bonus lulz, during the campaign the Sartori press organism raised concerns over a "voting list"2 supporting Lacalle Pou which included the line "Un bagayero, un patriota" which roughly carries the meaning that "a smuggler is a patriot." In the case of Uruguay this is both true in practice and deeply recognized as a truth in the culture. Unactionable complaints were filed with the police over the slogan with hand wringing and whining emitted by the classes that contribute the stone to the soup. Anyways, it is clearly a winning national campaign slogan.
The Talvi guy who identifies as an economist managed to edge out old gendered twice president Julio Sanguinetti garnering a clear majority in the least voted of the three major internals. Instead of a unified show of force as a singular, if irrelevant Colorado Party, Talvi answered Luis's Party of the Party with one on one media sitdowns election night. To the best of my knowledge no Colorado running mate has been chosen. Now that the competition has gone from intra-party to inter-party, militants from the other parties are very helpfuly spreading particular points of Talvi's very detailed platform.
Guido Manini Ríos, Uruguay's commander in chief of the Army3 from 2015 to earlier this year, took roughly 50,000 votes in the uncontested internal for the "independent" Cabildo Abierto party. Guido and his family are dedicated Colorados of the militant branch of the Colorado Party that governed during the dictatorship years, and by all appearances Cabildo Abierto was a shell of a party waiting for Guido to get fired in order to define the party. The local rags credit Sanguinetti's loss to an intra-Colorado dispute manifest into defectors leaving for Cabildo Abierto.
The Colorado Party and its splinter Cabildo Abierto survive based on a sort of heritable fandom every bit as bitter as the Peñarol versus Nacional futbol rivalry. The split is such that a woman Guido approached to be his running mate had to reject the approach in public citing family loyalties. Back before the mass Italian arrivals, Uruguay was a harder country. A country of men, and those men fought prolonged civil wars between the urban Colorado party controling the port and the rural Blanco, now National party holding the fields.
Other than branding loyalty, Guido's campaign is fueled by hyping the manufactered insecurity and proposing the "Caja Militar" ought to be priviledged over the other welfare programs successive Uruguayo governments have overburdened the country with. It's not a platform for electoral success on its own, and the conditions for a military coup just aren't here. There's maybe enough energy here to split the Colorado Party into still further irrelevance for a couple election cycles splitting the 8-15 percent of dedicated Colorado voters into still smaller chunks. The odd way elections work here, the fellow still might end up with a legislative seat, but that's doubtful.
The Obvious Prediction
The October general election results will almost certaintly lead to a November run off between Luis Lacalle Pou and Daniel Martinez.
- In Uruguay it is not Septiembre. The "p" is incompatible with their accent so they killed it by dictat. [↩]
- Voting in the Party internals here consists of placing up to 2 pre-printed voting lists inside the balloting envelope. This creates problems for the very marginal who can't print and place lists in the hands of their supporters. [↩]
- The Army of Uruguay presently recovers a substantial chunk of its operating expenses and acquires new material through participation in UN peacekeeping missions. They also operate the national anti-aircraft artillery which consists of roughly a dozen 20 millimeter cannons. Organized into four divisions the Army suffers an excessive ratio of General and Colonels to other personel. Similarly the Navy suffers from an excessive ratio of Admiralds and Captains to ships. [↩]