Venezuela is imploding from years of socialism

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Venezuela, an oil-rich country of more than 33.22 million in South America, is on the brink of economic collapse.
The culprit? Years of socialism, especially the 15-year presidency (1998-2013) of Hugo Chávez — the dictator who was Sean Penn’s best bud.
sean_penn_hugo_chavez_not_a_dictato
How bad is it in Venezuela?
Here are some bullets I’ve compiled from the Washington Post:

  • Instead of growing, Venezula’s economy shrank 10% in 2015 and is expected to shrink an additional 6% in 2016, according to the International Monetary Fund.
  • Inflation is now 720%.
  • Venezuela is expected to default on its debt in the very near future. The country is basically bankrupt.

What brought Venezuela’s economy to near-collapse, despite having the largest oil reserves in the world, is a combination of bad luck and worse policies:

  1. Under Hugo Chávez, the government was generous with welfare, from two-cent gasoline to free housing.
  2. But the spending was not matched by government revenue. Chávez turned the state-owned oil company from being professionally run to being barely run. People who knew what they were doing were replaced with people who were loyal to the regime. The state extracted profits from the oil company but skimped on investments to maintain the infrastructure and to blend or refine Venezuela’s extra-heavy crude — neither of which is cheap — before it can be sold. As a result, Venezuela could not churn out as much oil as it used to — its oil production fell 25% between 1999 and 2013.
  3. When the government ran out of money, it resorted to printing more money.
  4. Then in mid-2014, oil prices started collapsing, which meant even less revenue.
  5. So the government printed more money, which simply cheapened or devalued Venezuela’s currency by 93% in the past two years.

Source: dolartoday.com

Source: dolartoday.com

The results are hyper-inflation (720%!), scarcity and rationing of food and goods, and long lines for even basic commodities. Lines are so bad the government has even started rationing those, kicking people out of line based on the last digit of their national ID card.
Venezuelans line up in state-run supermarket
Beginning in February 2014, hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans have protested over high levels of criminal violence, inflation, and chronic scarcity of basic goods due to federal government policies. Those demonstrations and riots have resulted in 40 fatalities.
And it will only get worse, because Chávez’s successor, socialist president Nicolás Maduro, has changed the law so the opposition-controlled National Assembly can’t remove the central bank governor or appoint a new one. Maduro also picked someone who doesn’t even believe there’s such a thing as inflation to be the country’s economic czar. New economic minister, the far-left Luis Salas, said: “When a person goes to a shop and finds that prices have gone up, they are not in the presence of ‘inflation’.” Instead, Salas insists, it’s those “parasitic” capitalist businesses that are trying to push up profits as much as possible.
Matt O’Brien of the Washington Post dolefully concludes, “The only question now is whether Venezuela’s government or economy will completely collapse first. The key word there is ‘completely.’ Both are well into their death throes.”
Given the country’s proximity to the United States, I predict that in addition to Cubans and Puerto Ricans, America’s next swarm of illegal migrants and ‘refugees’ will come from Venezuela.
map of Venezuela in South America
A quote attributed to Albert Einstein says that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, but expecting different results.
By that definition, liberals/Progressive/socialists are insane because they keep advocating and doing the same thing, while expecting socialist policies to work. Venezuela is simply the latest example of that lunacy.
~Eowyn

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0 responses to “Venezuela is imploding from years of socialism

  1. This isn’t going to be a ‘first’ for Venezuela: it defaulted on tens of millions of Gubbmint Bonds during the last Depression, under a staunchly capitalist economy and gubbmint.
    Its most recent was in July 1998, when it defaulted on $270 million worth of domestic currency bonds.[https://www.davemanuel.com/2010/02/12/the-last-13-major-sovereign-bond-defaults/]
    And even earlier, in the 19th century, more powerful nations used their military to force nations to repay: ‘the United States’ “gunboat diplomacy” in Venezuela in the mid-1890’s’ is one such:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sovereign_default
    Now here is a nation’s leader who looks to me to be pondering most seriously, and he doesn’t fly to Hawai’i to golf during crises: Putin.

     
  2. look up Economic Hitman on you tube or the internet the guy used to go in for corporations and undermine governments, corrupt politicians and buy out state owned oil, electrical company’s, telephone, mining and other resources now all owned and controlled by huge forgien CORPORATIONS they have raped and pillaged all these countries into poverty enslaved the people into massive debt all through Economic Hitmen, cia and corporate FREE TRADE DEALS that only benefit the Global Corporations. The crooked leaders of these countries are paid good bribe salaries to continue the destruction of the country and peoples all while they live good lives, in mansions. All state owned resources and companies have been sold off long ago so basically the countries are owed by corporations, the debt owned by the people and the corrupt government officials paid off to do the bidding of their corporate masters. This will give you better insight into whats happening in South and Central America for many many decades. This is happening world wide with corporations taking over everything then installing their puppet governments to run things their way. Not just cheap gas and subsidies Chaves is the patsy or bought whore who allowed everything to happen how the corporations wanted it to so they could buy up everything for pennies on the dollar

     
  3. Oil-producing nation (OPEC member, even) and still an economic basket case… those socialist policies are sure something, eh? (And Democrats still want that here… )
    https://s3.amazonaws.com/armstrongeconomics-wp/2015/05/Thatcher-Socialism.jpg

     
  4. Only foolish people elect a leader like Chavez. And once in power, neither he nor his successor could be removed.
    How is it an entire nation could run out of toilet paper? I submit there are 2 reasons.
    1. If the stores are not allowed to make a profit, then the reason to buy products for resale is no longer there. Result: empty shelves.
    2. The Venezuelan government is so full of S**T there is no way to keep up with the demand.

     
  5. But Sanders can make it work…#feelthebern!!!! /sarc

     
    • I appreciate & get yr sarcasm, but many weak-minded sheople won’t ‘get it’ and will think you’re serious, especially in these duplicitous electoral times as we are now in. I know he’s full of the usual crapola, just as you are, but youngsters fall for his BS, and we adults need to at least try our best to mentor the young’uns, IMO. Lord, but it’s a long & weary road!

       
    • I must apologise IMMEDIATELY, as my lousy vision makes it very hard for me to get my two-fingered typing right 100%!
      I most certainly did NOT mean that you are as is Bernie Baby: ‘he’s full of the usual crapola, just as you are,’ but rather that you are fully aware of and understand his duplicity. Please forgive my lousy one-eyed typing, as all your posts are smart & savvy! Mea culpa, mea culpa!

       
  6. No, Venezuela’s problems are not caused by Socialism, but by American capitalist psychopathic interventionalism, as America has done around the world throughout its history.
    Hugo Chávez ‘was not’ a dictator. Period! He was elected by the people of his country. His death by cancer is strongly believed to have been caused by the CIA. See: 6 Latin American leaders who criticised US policies fall ill of cancer simultaneously – https://tinyurl.com/d28jtez .

     
    • dawes777, you are either uninformed or a knowing liar. Chavez was a monster who brought Cuban secret police in to oppress the citizens. And he offered shelter and military support to the murderous FARC who committed uncountable murders in neighboring Colombia.

       
      • Dear traildustfotm, I’m way too tired to make much sense, but if I get through tonight, I’ll do my best to address your topics. Sorry I can’t do better, as I’m battered by too many problems at once!

         
      • traildustfotm – Are you an agent-lackey of the American government or one of their subservient puppet-nations? If not, then with due respect to you as a fellow being, human or otherwise, but you clearly believe everything which is disgorged by the American government and mainstream media as being the Holy Grail. The opposite is the truth. Nothing, repeat nothing said by that entity or its paid-for media is true – unless it is in their perverted sociopathic and psychopathic interests. Anyone who believes in the integrity of the government lives in cloud-cuckoo land, and is therefore one of the sheeple masses. That is why America is fast falling into the gargantuan sinkhole of its own creation.

         
        • dawes,
          You have demonstrated an inability to disagree without being disagreeable. I do not appreciate your insults of TrailDust. This is not the first time you are rude: you were insulting and rude to DCG in the past, at which time I’d invited you to leave this forum. You neither responded, apologized, nor left. So I am doing it for you because we don’t have to put up with your abuse.
          Henceforth, you are banned from commenting unless you apologize. You can send your apologies to TrailDust and DCG in an email. You know what FOTM’s email address is.

           
        • You, Mr. “dawes777” are a hole with an “A” in it, quoting a wonderful Jesuit professor of mine towards people who are arrogant. You take yourself too seriously.

           
        • THE problem, dawes777, is that for whatever reasons, most of Venezuela’s crises stem from a terrible inbred tendency to corruption, period. GREED is all-too-human and simple to understand. There is a small number of VERY wealthy Venezuelans –its 1%– who could care less about the rest of the nation. Even though the nation is predominantly Christian and RC, this hasn’t kept it from being its own worst enemy.
          They have plenty of well-educated people, but nothing seems to have worked for it, although Chavez’s misguided policies made it appear that they were ‘getting their act together.’ NOT, no way.
          Here is a site w/an excellent over-view: https://www.nationsencyclopedia.com/Americas/Venezuela-HISTORY.html, and here is its truly sad, tragic commentary on its recent history:
          “In 1968, Venezuela passed another test of democracy by transferring power peacefully from AD to the opposition Social Christian Party. The victor, Rafael Caldera Rodríguez, governed along the same lines as his AD predecessors, maintaining a set of social programs and benefiting from increasing oil revenues. At this point, Venezuela’s future seemed assured, and public expenditures increased. The AD returned in 1973 with the victory of Carlos Andrés Pérez. By 1976, Pérez had brought about complete nationalization of the oil and iron industries. In the December 1978 elections, Luis Herrera Campíns, leader of the Social Christian Party, won the presidency.
          “The next year, Venezuela received its first rude awakening, when the oil market dropped, thus threatening the foundations of the Venezuelan economic and political systems. There was soon a financial crisis, as Venezuela struggled to make payments on its overextended debt. The crisis culminated in the devaluation of the national currency, the bolívar, which dropped to one-third of its previous value against the dollar. Venezuelan consumers responded angrily, and the early 1980s were years of unrest. In the elections of December 1983, the AD returned to power behind presidential candidate Jaime Lusinchi.
          “Lusinchi’s tenure was marred by scandal and trouble in the midst of the world petroleum crisis. While the economy floundered through the 1980s, the government maintained public confidence by stressing a “social pact” with guarantees of housing, education, and public health. Some progress was made in boosting non-oil exports, particularly in agriculture and mining, and the government promoted import substitution, particularly in food and manufacturing.
          “The 1988 elections brought back Carlos Andrés Pérez, who had been elected president 15 years earlier. Pérez immediately imposed austerity measures, removing government subsidies on a number of consumer goods, including gasoline. Prices rose and Caracas was rocked by rioting on a scale not seen since the uprising of 1958. The military was called in to quell the disturbances, but when the trouble finally died down, thousands had been killed or injured. The situation continued to deteriorate, and in 1992 Venezuela was shocked by two military coup attempts. The leader of the coup was an obscure and young military leader named Hugo Rafael Chávez Friaz. Venezuelans could not have guessed that Chávez within a short few years would be leading the nation.”
          Read more: https://www.nationsencyclopedia.com/Americas/Venezuela-HISTORY.html#ixzz3z0jKAqkm
          Until the people of this wonderfully endowed –but horrribly governed– nation get their governance in hand and distribute its wealth much more equitably, it will continue its sad history. So, if you feel life is hard in North America, one look at this national disaster will make you feel a lot better.

           
    • I’ve had a rough 48 hours, looking after my housemate w/a schizoid paranoid delusional crisis, but I will defend you asap tomorrow, against our beloved traildustfotm, who’s not yet known the full history of this beleaguered and poorly governed nation.
      Not sure how much I can last w/my trials & tribulations, but I come from a long line of hardy old country mavericks!

       
    • Yes, the United States through the years has interfered in Latin America’s politics. Yes, corporations can be evil. But to blame ALL of Venezuela’s present ills on the machinations of Americans is to absolve Venezuelans of all responsibility. In so doing, you are behaving just like the imperialists you condemn because you treat Venezuelans as helpless children or mindless puppets, who are incapable of doing anything on their own.
      No one put a gun to Hugo Chavez to nationalize Venezuela’s oil and other key industries. No one put a gun to Chavez to spend way more than the government earns in oil revenue. No one put a gun to Chavez to ruin the state-owned oil industry with incompetence. No one put a gun to the present president’s head to hire a far-left economic minister who does not have even an elementary understanding of economics. You are using the U.S. as a scapegoat.
      As for Chavez being a dictator, it began when he created a new institution called the Constitutional Assembly, which proceeded to radically transform Venezuela’s political system. Here’s a quote from Wikipedia:
      “On 12 August 1999, the new constitutional assembly voted to give themselves the power to abolish government institutions and to dismiss officials…. Opponents of the Chávez regime argued that it was therefore dictatorial.[185][186] Most jurists believed that the new constitutional assembly became the country’s “supreme authority” and that all other institutions were subordinate to it.[187] The assembly also declared a “judicial emergency”, granting itself the power to overhaul the judicial system…[and] created the “Supreme Tribunal of Justice” in its [Supreme Court’s] place.[188][189]
      The constituent assembly, filled with Chávez’s supporters,[181] put together a new constitution, and a referendum on the issue of whether to adopt it was held in December 1999; the referendum saw an abstention vote of over 50%, although among those voting, 72% approved the new constitution’s adoption.[184][190][191] The constitution…gave greater powers to Chávez.[181][192] The assembly granted the presidency more power by extending their term and getting rid of the two houses of the Congress…”

      Then, to top it off, you insult and deride TrailDust for disagreeing with you, calling him a government “lackey” and “sheeple”. TD disagreed with you but did not stoop to insulting your intelligence or integrity. But you, again and again, demonstrated otherwise and, in so doing, displayed your rudeness, viciousness, and utter lack of character.
      YOU ARE NO LONGER WELCOME ON FOTM.

       
  7. I tried to read the above provided site regarding “6 Latin American leaders who criticized US policies” — the site would be shown for 30 seconds and then it was gone. I don’t know what was happening, but then we all know I am not a computer genius. Just as a matter of interest, I would have liked to read the article.

     
  8. Communism sucks and communists are suckers.

     
  9. Yeppers, because as was Satan, it was lies from the get-go and all along the way, so nothing else can be expcted. See R Crossman’s, “The God that Failed”. I read it in HS, 19660, and I ‘got it’ right away!
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_God_that_Failed

     
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