Date: Wed, 04 Jun 2003 10:46:38 -0500
From: Elio Cequea Feico57@aol.com
To: Editor@VHeadline.com
Subject: I still don’t see your problem with Jack Kemp

Dear Editor: I still don’t see Gustavo Coronel’s problem with Jack Kemp. According to Marc Lifsher, Mr. Kemp seems to be helping Venezuela to get some extra business. This might help to recuperate some of the losses caused by the “experts” strike.

An extra $1 billion in business over a three-year period paying only $50 million in commissions does not sound like a bad deal to me. But, do not quote me … Coronel is the expert on matters of petroleum.

Going back to my original point:
Why is it that we in Venezuela automatically consider anything from abroad better, clever and more credible? Let’s see who is Marc Lifsher and what he has to say.

Marc Lifsher is The Wall Street Journal main man in Venezuela. In his writing he tends to follow the same type of reporting as many journalists who are sympathetic towards the opposition. He starts by stating: “Deal involving Jack Kemp and the Strategic Reserve worries some in industry.” This is just part of the headline … to support his argument that “some” are worried, Lifsher quotes somebody named Susan Jagger who he says is “an independent oil consultant in Connecticut.”

Yes! That will give her credibility! She is quoted saying that the process to close the deal “is not as transparent as it should be.” She is also quoted asking “why are there not more open negotiations between PDVSA and the market place?”

These comments leave no doubts in my mind that she must be a genius!

Nevertheless, what I want to point out is the fact that Lifsher contradicts himself trying to make his case. He indicates that the marketing relationship between Free Market Petroleum LLC and PDVSA has “raised eyebrows among oil executives because it introduces third-party intermediaries into commercial transactions that previously took placed directly between PDVSA and its buyers.”

He forgot that he wrote only two paragraphs before that the US Strategic Petroleum Reserve “doesn’t buy crude directly from producers.”

How does he get to write for WSJ? A third party is the only way you can do business with the Reserve! Why bother to read the rest? …I did though.

OK, enough of that!  I also took the time to check Coronel’s source “Reporte Diario de la Economia” at www.reporte.com.ve with regard to Free Market Petroleum LLC being staffed with young inexperienced brokers … “one of them rumored to be associated with Mark Rich.”

Those reports, articles, opinions or news, whatever you want to call it, are NOT even signed!

Let me ask you a non-rhetorical question, where did you get the information that Rafael Ramirez … with the silent participation of Ali Rodriguez … formed Free Market Petroleum LLC?

I hope it was not Marta Colomina, Mr. Coronel.

If you keep using El Nacional as a source of information, what can I tell you? Those people sometimes “report from a report reported in a report that was reported by another newspaper.” Do you see my point? I apologize if I sound condescending. but I know you are smarter than that.

More than a privilege, it is a responsibility to be able to write anything and get published. People use this information to make up their own criteria … I am sure you can do a much better job than that,

Elio Cequea