Argentina
Enjoy the silence
Por Ignacio Fidanza
Massa's deal with Kirchnerism will ultimately define the voting landscape. This is the previous moment before the battle.

When politicians turn their cellphones off, better buckle up. Something big is about to happen. And just like poker players say, if you do not know who the loser is, then the loser is you.

Something like that is happening in the Casa Rosada, where they have lost the pulse in the negotiation with Sergio Massa, in the most critical moment of the process. Now they can only confirm that Peronists will end up all together, because they are one and the same. A consolation for trolls in electoral times.

Facing the media and social media blitzkrieg, Cristina chose to go back to basics. Politics 101: add allies to win votes. Power arithmetic, facing the liquid algorithm of the "Defenders of Change", sailing at the speed of light through Whatsapp chats. A leader for a shared space.

The domino effect in the provinces seems to agree with The Old School: in the places, where Peronism unified its constituency, the distance with Cambiemos was ten points. But the race for President is a game too large to blindly trust in the foreseeable extrapolation from the local to the national.

The Iron Lady knows this, and that is why she is working to build a victory in the first round. She wants to support a landslide victory in the primaries, imposing against Cambiemos in Buenos Aires, and detonating a deep charge in the President's ticket. She wants to lower their defenses before the fight even begins.

It is understandable. Ballotage -the second round- is an uncertain scenario, one where Macri is the favorite. Basic Sun Tzu: The battle is won before it begins, and the victor is the one who choses the field and the most favorable timing for their forces.

If anything can be reproached to Cambiemos, until now, is that they seem to have lost their perfect timing. They offered Massa what he was asking for, so he would not go with Cristina, precisely when it was already too late. Being late is like not arriving at all.

But let's not get confused, the match is on. Macri still has time to put the puzzle pieces together, the ones he has in hand, and to take advantage of the mass repealing Peronism as intensely as those who embrace it. Things are now clear; he might say with some certainty.

Rate stability and employment destruction. Macro adjustment, recovery of energy self-sufficiency, improvement in the agricultural industry, a SMEs and commerce Chernobyl. A drop in consumer confidence, and public projects that start and end. White and blue-collar corruption. A truly painful poverty level. This is a complex world, with worn-out actors and low flying campaigns. This is a self-denying world, with little to no space left for dreams in any of its margins.

That is the size of failure, which did not begin with this administration. And precisely because of that, this may be the starting point of a more sensible experience. Or not. Why feed false illusions -again? Let's enjoy the silence of these few hours, the gift of a pause, the moments before the troops can be seen in the distance. 

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