Authenticity Has a Special Value

Janis Hernandez

Interim president, Nicolas Maduro, the current foreign minister, Elias Jaua and Hugo Chavez. Foto/archive: Caridad

HAVANA TIMES – Authenticity is something of exceptional value, which should be applied to any human activity. Being genuine lends authenticity to the degree of credibility a given person/matter may have.

However, these are times when norms and standards are repeated all the time. So we continually have the feeling that except in cases of technological and scientific advance, originality has been disappearing from view. And so we borrow traits unrelated to the nature of things.

In the arts, for example, there is a strong tendency towards the retrograde. The music played in most of the world today is very much alike. We are returning to the patterns and trends of years ago, in fashion, in the visual arts, and performing arts, etc.

Politics is no stranger to this tendency and the speeches, gestures and even modes of implementation of projects, give the impression of being mere reproductions of a model.

This feeling of seeing something repeated, I’ve noticed when following the process of the Venezuelan revolution where its driver [Hugo Chavez] insisted on being a sort of replica of the leader of the Cuban revolution [Fidel Castro], even though the differences were marked and the times quite different.

The proselyte followed the recipe of the master to the letter of the law. But like a paradox of fate, when the master was no longer dictating the lessons, his successor applied his own style without copying or imitating the master.

I think that was one of the reasons why, as far as Raul Castro is concerned, many people here feel: between him and the other one I’ll keep this one…

In Venezuela, however, the interim president Nicolas Maduro presents himself as an extension of Chavez, as his clone. He tries to copy his gestures, his tone of voice, and the way he talked.

Of course all of this is all part of the electoral campaign, in which he has thus far had a very easy time, with even the body of Chavez helping in the electoral battle.

But Maduro should be very aware that acting like Chavez alone will not be enough. He will have to continue improving on his work. He better be careful with this current strategy, in which he has placed the bar of his predecessor too high, making it more difficult for him to raise it.

Even if Maduro is doing everything with the best of intentions, being authentic is very important, besides helping avoid risks.