Milei and his Discipline Operation: the attack as a presidential method

Santiago Caputo takes out his cell phone and shows it to Javier Milei. He tells her to see what he was seeing: the screen returns the image of X, their preferred platform. Look at this, this topic is working, look at what they tell you. He baits it, like the bullfighter who provokes the bull to make it engage. “El Loco” listens to him: he blindly trusts him since he heard him assure, before the PASO, that he was going to leave first. He was the only one in all of La Libertad Avanza who shared the prognosis of the libertarian and his sister, and since then he became his shadow.

The star advisor seems to be the perfect counterpart to the President, his rational, cold and calculating side. But maybe it’s not just that. On the night of February 7, journalist Ernesto Tenembaum hinted on his networks that Caputo had an anonymous account on X, under the user @DuquedeSuabia. It was something that the black monk from Milei had already done during the campaign, in which he posed as one called @SnakeDocDelta, from where he said that he was “one of the most intelligent people in the country” and also a “lover of weapons.” . The last one, which he deleted only a few hours after Tenembaum’s notice, contained messages such as “five years ago we blew the whistle on him” (in reference to the rest of the parties), that he was going to “shame” Massa, Frigerio , Massot, and Monzó, and that, after the omnibus law fell, “the question was whether Glock 17 or Glock 45.”

Perhaps, then, Caputo is more similar to Milei than most think. Perhaps not, and he has simply managed to decode the wildest and most emotional part of the President, the one that first made him known in the media and that was later the heart of his political platform. But the truth is this: behind some of the libertarian’s outbursts is the strategist. Winding it up. Making it mesh. Showing him that the artist Lali is called “deposit” on the networks, that she has even more followers than him and that a direct crossing could become the talk of the week. Thus, consciously, on purpose, diverting the conversation from more worrying topics such as inflation and the economy to successive fights involving the President. Establishing the Milei crossings against journalists, musicians, governors, deputies and union members as a central part of the story of this Government, which so far has no positive results to show. Squeezing every last drop from the only real political capital that the ruling party has: the popularity, still strong, of the libertarian.

Whip. There are two questions that appear in each red circle talk. The first is how long the libertarian experiment can last, a question that worries many. The second is whether Milei is or becomes, a doubt that has hovered over the character in question since she entered the media. Whether her outbursts of violence are part of a masterful move or simply the incontinence of someone who is convinced that her death was the connection with God, the one who entrusted him to become a politician.

Because of Caputo’s task, it would seem that the economist “becomes” more than he “is.” That there is an elaborate logistics – in which the team of tweeters also participates, whom Karina calls “my boys”, who have an office in the Women’s Room of the Casa Rosada that they had walled up (see box) – that creates artificial fights to divert attention. But is it just that?

February 15 was the day after the interview in La Nación + in which the president targeted the artist. At 8 in the morning, when she was at Quinta de Olivos without her communication equipment, Milei grabbed her cell phone and went up to “He sings but he plays back.” Leaving aside the irony of the situation – the libertarian, as NEWS reported, does something much more serious than playback such as plagiarism – the fact shows that it is not necessary for there to be anyone nearby for the man to embark on one of his furious fights: X and Instagram are handled by him in person.

The times when you use the first one, your preferred network, show that in most cases you must be alone or at most with your partner. La Nación published an extensive report in which it analyzed the 4,364 publications he made since taking office, and which gives an average of 73 tweets per day. “Statistics reveal that its busiest time is between 10 and 11 p.m. (10.5% of its content was made during that time). He is followed by 11 p.m., 8 p.m., 9 p.m. and 12 a.m., but he has also done it in the early morning, between 3 and 5 a.m., at least 68 times,” says the newspaper, which also reports that 506 of his publications They were “attacks”. Hard to imagine that at four in the morning Caputo is in Olivos whispering in the President’s ear.

So far in the Government, Milei has attacked by name and surname María O’Donnell, Luisa Corradini, Silvia Mercado, Alejandro Borensztein, Ricardo López Murphy, Martín Lousteau, Martín Llaryora, Maximiliano Pullaro, Ricardo Quintela, Miguel Ángel Pichetto, María Becerra, Eduardo Belliboni, Hugo Arana, Axel Kicillof, Carolina Píparo, Nicolás Massot, Emilio Monzó. The signatures continue and include even the late actor Hugo Arana. He also attacked parties and institutions, such as Congress – “rat’s nest” – or the UCR – “whores of Peronism” -. A curiosity: CFK, for now, remains out of the reach of his most furious darts, although in the last interview she gave to La Nación + she called her for the first time “the boss of the gang.”

Although the differences between the newly appointed could not be greater, they all share something in common: none of them pays absolute homage to Milei, the necessary condition that the libertarian and his inner circle demand to be included in the list of “good Argentines.” ”. Píparo, to give an example, went from candidate for Buenos Aires governor to “traitor” for voting against only one section of the entire omnibus law. The President’s Discipline Operation is clear: it is all or it is nothing, one is an unconditional ally who will never ever express a single objection or one is a sworn enemy of the “Forces of Heaven.” It is a strategy of his advisors but it is also the verbal and emotional incontinence that has characterized him since he was a lonely and friendless child at the Cardenal Copello school, where he earned the nickname that accompanied him for much of his life. he.

Milei, who believes that God entrusted him with the “mission” of fighting “the evil one,” can only see his political career in a messianic and theological code. “I am straight and inflexible, I am clean, that is why I can play hard, others cannot do that,” he stated in the last interview on LN +. That is the biblical record that he uses, in which he even uses passages from Moses, to divide good – which he embodies, the “clean” – from evil – the dirty?

The thing is that for Milei there are no grays. There is only black or white.

Checkbook. But the crossings do not remain only in the stratosphere of the networks or in spicy statements in interviews. Part of the burden against anyone who does not pay homage to him becomes a reality. After the fall of the law, the Government announced a sharp reduction in transfers to the provinces, in the form of a reduction in funds for transportation subsidies and for state teachers. “El Loco” hits where it hurts most.

What remains is to ask if this way of governing is effective. If you ask Caputo or Milei they would surely say yes, and they would even have numbers to prove their argument. The Ad hoc consultancy, for example, measured the digital conversation on social networks between Wednesday the 15th and Thursday the 16th. These were the days of the peak of Milei’s fight against Lali, which coincided with the publication of the latest inflation data that had been published. returned a worrying 20.6 in January. The report says: “Three of the five concepts associated with Javier Milei in those days refer to his statements about Espósito. Neither the inflation data nor Cristina Kirchner’s letter modify the public conversation agenda proposed by the President. The ruling party regains the control of the agenda and manages to avoid talking about classes, inflation or the ups and downs in Congress.

Here is the heart of the strategic part of Milei’s start: in the Government they believe that until there are favorable results from the economy to show – which without a recorder on they imagine for only in the second semester – they are going to need to divert their humor towards presidential seizures. “Politics is a bit of a show,” says the libertarian. Will that be enough?

The question is whether the escalation of violence proposed by the President cannot be transformed into a boomerang that ends up playing against the ruling party. It can be seen in clear examples. The “dialogue” deputies swear that if Milei’s vehemence against them had not been so great, if they had proposed a more serene path – such as sending the law divided into specific laws – the bulk of the issues raised, such as extraordinary powers, would have been approved. Another could be the political costs of the fierce cuts in education. If classes don’t start, who will be the most enrolled? Milei proposes blaming the governors, but it is a gamble to see if the anger is actually channeled in this way or if it will end up having a full impact on his figure.

There is another element, probably the most serious of all. It is the doubt about whether the enormous verbal aggression displayed by the president will one day be transferred to physical aggression. It is a logical doubt, taking into account that this is usually the path that violence takes, something that can be contrasted in the attempted murder of CFK. And also in other data, such as in the decision made by journalist Luciana Peker to leave the country after Justice verified threats against her, or in the work that CELS has been doing together with Crisis magazine. They created RADAR (Registry of Attacks by Radicalized Argentine Right). Their numbers show that of the 221 attacks they recorded since March 2020, 38 were between December and January. That is to say, 17% of the cases occurred since Milei took office, in just two months.

Unleashed anger also has one last problem. You know where it starts – in this Argentina, a lot of violence is born in Milei’s mouth – but never, ever, where it ends. Operation Discipline can end up going wrong. For all.

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