Venezuela socialist nightmare: Dead buried in plastic wrap because family can’t afford a casket

Hollie McKay reports for FoxNews, Dec. 13, 2018, that as the crisis in Venezuela’s socialist dictatorship deepens with mass hunger, starvation and a lack of medical supplies, there is no comfort even for the dead.

Venezuelan opposition leader Julio Borges, who has been living in exile in the Colombian capital of Bogota for the past nine months, told Fox News: “What is happening is medieval. People are ‘renting’ caskets for a service, but giving them back. The same casket is being used over and over again because people cannot afford to buy one. And then they have to wrap the body in plastic bags for the burial. Others don’t have money for a land plot, so they are burying loved ones in their back garden.

Other Venezuelans concur. They say the use of “common graves,” along with backyard burials, is becoming standard.

According to Julett Pineda, a Caracas health journalist, funerals in Venezuela cost more than 132 times the average minimum wage earned per month of around six dollars per person – making a final farewell far out of reach for most who would need years of savings to cover costs. Pineda told FoxNews: “Funeral services are too expensive. Coffins are expensive, as well as paying for a place in the cemetery and everything that comes with it: the chapel for the service, the plate. People cannot have a decent funeral.”

Many resort to cremating the dead because cremation costs roughly a third of burial costs. Guillermo Aveledo, a political science professor at the University of Caracas, explained: “In poorer areas, plywood coffins are sometimes being used. Former middle classes can rent a proper coffin for the wake, but prefer cremation, which is cheaper.”

But even the process of cremation has become problematic because of the acute lack of natural gas to properly incinerate the bodies, despite the fact Venezuela has some of the largest energy reserves in the world. “In some very isolated places, people get used lots for burial, which creates sanitary problems,” Aveledo said.

The shortage of hearses is also an issue. There are fewer and fewer of them available, and the acute fuel shortage – wait times at some gas stations can be as long as 24 hours – makes it harder to keep them running. In some extreme cases, impoverished Venezuelans drag their dead for days in the sweltering sun to reach the Colombian border, where locals assist them with some kind of burial.

Alexander Lopez is a disabled Venezuelan who injured his right leg three years ago in a motorcycle accident. His wounded leg became infected a year later and had to be amputated because of the lack of affordable medicines and medical professionals. Lopez fled Venezuela six months ago to find work to support his son, 19, and daughter, 11, because he could no longer sit by as his family was forced to scour through trash for food. Lopez now sells keychains, incense, and trash bags for a few cents each in Cuenca, Ecaudor.

Two months ago, Lopez’s son was killed in a motorcycle accident. For weeks, the body languished at the morgue as family members were unable to afford the bus fare and boat to collect the remains. Lopez’s former wife and mother of their son, used her law enforcement connections to cobble together some money. But when she got to the morgue, the owners would not release the body – demanding the standard morgue fee plus a bribe, totaling $150, an amount that far surpasses an average month’s earning. “Everyone in Venezuela is so desperate for money, even the morgue will manipulate the people,” Lopez wept, holding up his son’s photograph.

After days, Lopez’ family finally put together enough money to pay the morgue, and a further $88 to pay a local gravedigger, but there were no funds for a service, no memorial plaque or tombstone. Lopez said softly: “Even with all that, “the dead in Venezuela are still worth more than the living. I am worth nothing to that government.”

Lack of medical attention and resources has fueled a spiking death rate in Venezuela. People are dying from the most common and treatable infections and diseases, like the common flu.

Violent crime is also on the rise. Last week, two ex-major league baseball players – free agent Luis Valbuena and former player Jose Castillo – were killed in a crash after their car collided with a rock. Authorities believe the rock may have been deliberately placed in the road, as part of a robbery scheme. A Venezuelan humanitarian worker explained: “People throw rocks in the hope of stopping the car so they can steal it. In this case, it ended horribly… Even if these men had survived, there are not adequate means in the hospital to save them.”

Then there is the looting of cemeteries. Most cemeteries are public municipal lots, but the dearth of public safety exposes the tombs to looting, and mourners and visitors being mugged.

Venezuela has descended into such chaos that no one knows how many people have died because the government doesn’t have the resources to keep track of the dead. So the people are trying to do that. In Caracas, a group of journalists visit the morgues at the end of each week to count the dead, trying to determine how many died from organized crime and from “other” causes like disease or malnutrition.

There’s no indication the situation will improve any time soon. Despite once-brimming oil wealth that had Venezuela as the richest country in Latin America, the Nicolás Maduro-led government – which  continues the socialist policies of his predecessor, Hugo Chavez – has pushed the nation’s economy into dire freefall, upended by massive hyperinflation, food and medicine shortages. More than three million Venezuelans have fled the country since their country began spiraling out of control three years ago.

But the government continues to deny Venezuela is in crisis, and instead blames its economic woes on domestic political opponents and the United States.

Here’s the FoxNews video:

Meanwhile, Hugo Chavez’s best bud and faux humanitarian Sean Penn is still no where to be seen in Venezuela.

Instead, he was spotted dining with disgraced PBS-CBS host Charlie Rose, whom Penn continues to defend, in the swanky Frenchette restaurant in Tribeca, NYC, where the menu is in French and a rib-eye steak (“Cote de Boeuf”) costs $134 per serving.

See also:

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Dr. EowynPUMABydesign001AnonymousWhere's the $$$$MadMagyar Recent comment authors
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Hawkmoon
Guest
Hawkmoon

Deport the mentally ill liberals who love socialism there, and the lunatic liberals who worship Orwellian “Diversity” to the middle of Africa and let them sample it for real

DCG
Editor

Where’s the UN calling for an end to this humanitarian crisis? That is sarcasm of course….

Watertender
Member
Watertender

I have family that should be thrown in the hole face down… Being buried in plastic wrap would be too good for them…. I truthfully think the ground will puke them back out as unfit….

Auntie Lulu
Guest
Auntie Lulu

What a tragedy. If only the young people in our country could see the results of Socialism-Communism. Perhaps they would wake up.

Steven Broiles
Member

Now that Russia is going to put a military base in Venezuela, maybe they can overturn the DEMENTED government there and establish some real social order. I mean, it’s not like we have the MONROE DOCTRINE in effect any more!
What has been happening in Venezuela has been planned by central bankers who rather enjoy the genocide and misery they’ve imposed upon that country, and they want to impose universal poverty and starvation upon the entire world. Don’t think that it can’t happen here.

Alma
Member
Alma

Steven I wish I could agree with You.  Venezuelans were forewarned but they turned a deaf ear -now they are reaping their sowing. There  won’t be but continue with the social disorder created by the CastroCuba.  Russia/Putin continue to have big dreams of returning a spy base right in front of our noses, it didn’t work in Cuba because the Castro brothers used Russia’s money to infiltrate de US, export the revolution throughout the region, and Africa where they got defeated, and the USSR resources were depleted, and Mikhail Gorbachev announced on September 11, 1991 that all Soviet troops would… Read more »

Lophatt
Member
Lophatt

Anyone dumb enough to fall for this by any name deserves what they get:

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CalGirl
Guest
CalGirl

Well, at least their families still care to take care of their dead; they get buried: plenty of situations in which the dead were treated less reverently….such as Stalinist Russia when people died of starvation in such number during WWII that the bodies were just put out on the street to freeze/be carried off by “the government.” Even the great genius, Mozart, died during a time of disease / large “die-off” in Austria, and “the government” handled him, and others, by carting them off in cloth sacks, throwing them in mass grave/pitt and slaking them with lime. All that said……I… Read more »

Mad Celt
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Mad Celt

They will continue to insist that Venezula did not apply socialism correctly. People like Sanders and AOC believe they are touched by God to make it work in America. They have neither the wits or the wisdom to understand no form of government is perfect but the one that inflicts the least amoumt of damage is the better. If all men were good, moral and decent socialism might stand a chance but men never are without persistent, constant force. Socialism always begins in blood and ends in misery. Not once has it created anything remotely close to a tolerant paradise.… Read more »

Alma
Member
Alma

Sorry, but there is a big difference between socialism and that of COMMUNISM. Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua have communists tyrannies. The USSR was a communist dictatorship, people were sent to the Siberian gulags prisons to die.

Scotty Gunn
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Scotty Gunn

Democrats want this here in the USA.

MadMagyar
Guest
MadMagyar

That’s for the ones who don’t wind up as barbacoa . . .

Where's the $$$$
Guest
Where's the $$$$

Where are Hugo’s daughters living now? They have BILLIONS OF STOLEN DOLLARS given to them by their cancer stricken daddy before he died. That money belongs to the people of Venezuela!

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

That’s what we need here– right, Democrats?

Lophatt
Member
Lophatt

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Lophatt
Member
Lophatt

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PUMABydesign001
Guest

As not reported by America’s Communist media complex is the reality that Communism is hell.

Also not reported on is exactly how close states that have been bankrupted by failed Progressive policies have driven middle class and poor Americans in similar situations?

As reported back in 2009, Detroit: Too broke to bury their dead and in 2011, Why Illinois Can’t Afford its Poor Dead.

Unfortunately, it’s not enough to wake up Americans living under the illusion that Communism is grand.