Venezuela’s Socialism has given it one of the World’s highest Murder Rates

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 11th, 2014

Week in Review

President Obama is launching a war against income disparity.  Because under his 5 years or so as president the rich got richer while the median family income fell.  This income gap is the source of all our woes.  Or so he says.  And it can lead to other bad things.  Like violence between the classes.  Which is why he’ll say we need to raise the taxes on the rich.  To help everyone else who has suffered under the Obama economic policies.  So everyone has everything they could ever need or want.  And be happy.  Where people will live together in peace and bliss.  Like in socialists countries.  Where they put people before profits (see Former Miss Venezuela Monica Spear slain resisting robbery by Jorge Rueda, The Associated Press, posted 1/7/2014 on The Star).

Assailants shot and killed a popular soap-opera actress and former Miss Venezuela and her Irish ex-husband in the presence of their 5-year-old daughter when they resisted a robbery, authorities said Tuesday.

Monica Spear, 29, and Henry Thomas Berry, 39, were slain late Monday night on a roadside near Puerto Cabello, Venezuela’s main port, after their car broke down, the prosecutor’s office said in a statement…

Venezuela has one of the world’s highest murder rates and violent crime is so rampant that Venezuelans tend to stay home after dark…

According to the non-profit Venezuelan Observatory of Violence, the oil-rich South American country’s murder rate was 79 per 100,000 inhabitants last year.

Hugo Chávez was an extreme anti-capitalist.  And he turned Venezuela into a socialist paradise.  Putting people before profits.  But like all other planned economies it just led to shortages of everything.  And because the state couldn’t provide like a free market could a profitable black market developed.  Where what limited goods there were ended up selling at higher prices.  Leading to great income disparity.  As people with money could buy what they needed from the black markets while the poorer people could not.  And went without.

Deprivation and corruption led to ever greater income disparity.  As criminals and those in government lived well.  While the people suffered abject poverty.  Leading to a society that became so lawless that the people hid in their homes after dark.  This is what you get with socialism.  Well, that.  And an oppressive police state.  To keep those suffering abject poverty from rising up against the government.  So those in government can continue to live the good life.  While they continue to ‘fight for the people’.  Who never seem to escape from their abject poverty.

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Hugo Chávez’ Socialism made Venezuela a more Violent and Dangerous Place

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 28th, 2013

Week in Review

The Democrats have a mission.  To reduce the income disparity between rich and poor.  To reduce the rate of violent crime.  For the only reason people ever hurt one another is because they are wanting for the basic necessities in life.  And they sometimes take them forcibly from those who have them.  But if there is no income disparity there is no rich and poor.  So no one would ever hurt anyone.

Which is why Democrats work so hard to reduce the income disparity between rich and poor.  Their tool?  Income redistribution.  From those according to ability.  To those according to need.  Like Karl Marx wanted to do.  But socialism never really caught on in the United States.  As most Americans see the abject failure it has been.  But this hasn’t stopped other nations from experimenting with it.  In 1999 Hugo Chávez became president of Venezuela.  And he proceeded to make Venezuela socialist.  Here are some highlights of his work pulled from Wikipedia:

Following Chavismo, his own political ideology of Bolivarianism and Socialism of the 21st Century, he focused on implementing socialist reforms in the country as a part of a social project known as the Bolivarian Revolution. He implemented the 1999 Venezuelan Constitution, participatory democratic councils, the nationalization of several key industries, and increased government funding of health care and education and made significant reductions in poverty with oil revenues.[1][2] The Bolivarian Missions have entailed the construction of thousands of free medical clinics for the poor,[3] the institution of educational campaigns that have reportedly made more than one million adult Venezuelans literate,[4] and the enactment of food[5] and housing subsidies…[6]

Closely aligning himself with the communist governments of Fidel and then Raúl Castro in Cuba and the socialist governments of Evo Morales in Bolivia, Rafael Correa in Ecuador, and Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua, his presidency was seen as a part of the socialist “pink tide” sweeping Latin America. Along with these governments, Chávez described his policies as anti-imperialist, being a prominent adversary of the United States’s foreign policy as well as a vocal critic of US-supported neoliberalism and laissez-faire capitalism.[8] He supported Latin American and Caribbean cooperation and was instrumental in setting up the pan-regional Union of South American Nations, the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas, the Bank of the South, and the regional television network TeleSur. Chávez was a highly controversial and divisive figure both at home and abroad. On occasion he used undiplomatic language towards other world leaders, having compared US president George W. Bush to a donkey[9] and the devil.[10]

Hugo Chávez created a socialist paradise in Venezuela.  One that would have pleased the father of socialism.  Karl Marx.  Chávez destroyed the income disparity between rich and poor.  Making the people happy.  Where they linked their arms together and sang Kumbaya.  Like the hippies in America did as they lived in their socialist/communist communes.  So you think the people would be living together in a brotherhood of man.  Like John Lennon sang about in his song Imagine.  No possessions.  No greed or hunger.  Just everyone living as one.  So how is that socialist paradise?  Well, the people aren’t living as one in a brotherhood of man (see Venezuela’s Homicide Rate Rises, NGO’s Report Says by the AP posted on ABC News).

A non-governmental group that tracks violent crime in Venezuela says the country’s homicide rate has risen again in 2013 and has quadrupled over the past 15 years.

The Venezuelan Violence Observatory estimates that 24,763 killings occurred this year, pushing up the homicide rate to 79 per 100,000 inhabitants. It was 73 per 100,000 people in 2012. In 1998, the rate was 19.

The more Chávez made Venezuela socialist the more violent crime there was.  That’s not what’s supposed to happen according to the Democrats.  It’s supposed to create a brotherhood of man.  Like John Lennon sang about.  Not make more people kill each other.  Apparently not only was Karl Marx wrong.  But the Democrats are wrong, too.  Imagine that.

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Venezuela’s Socialist Policies cause Runaway Inflation and High Prices

Posted by PITHOCRATES - November 24th, 2013

Week in Review

Socialists who attack capitalism say they are the champion of the poor.  And yet the poorest of the poor are in socialist countries.  Where some live without indoor plumbing or electric power.  While the poor in capitalist countries can suffer from obesity.  And most if not all have indoor plumbing and electric power.  As well as refrigerators, microwaves and televisions.

Venezuela is an anti-capitalist, socialist country.  So you would think it’s a poor person’s paradise there.  But because of runaway inflation only the rich do well in this socialist paradise.  While the poor can barely afford to live (see Venezuela jails 100 ‘bourgeois’ businessmen in crackdown by Andrew Cawthorne and Deisy Buitrago, Reuters, posted 11/14/2013 on Yahoo! News).

Venezuela’s socialist government has arrested more than 100 “bourgeois” businessmen in a crackdown on alleged price-gouging at hundreds of shops and companies since the weekend, President Nicolas Maduro said on Thursday.

“They are barbaric, these capitalist parasites!” Maduro thundered in the latest of his lengthy daily speeches. “We have more than 100 of the bourgeoisie behind bars at the moment.”

The successor to the late Hugo Chavez also said his government was preparing a law to limit Venezuelan businesses’ profits to between 15 percent and 30 percent.

Officials say unscrupulous companies have been hiking prices of electronics and other goods more than 1,000 percent. Critics say failed socialist economic policies and restricted access to foreign currency are behind Venezuela’s runaway inflation.

So what’s to blame for these high prices?  Capitalism?  Or socialism?  Well, if you blame a devalued currency and a scarcity of basic goods, you have to blame socialism.

Venezuela’s official inflation, 54 percent annually, is the highest in the Americas…

Given Venezuelans’ anxiety over inflation, and scarcities of basic goods from toilet paper to milk, Maduro was risking a backlash at the December 8 nationwide municipal elections…

Critics say the moves do not tackle the roots of Venezuela’s economic malaise, like an overvalued bolivar that forces many importers to buy black-market dollars and then pass those costs on to consumers.

The government has ordered local telecom companies to block various websites showing the bolivar at 10 times the official rate of 6.3 to the greenback on the illegal market.

The socialist economy of Venezuela can’t provide the basic necessities.  So they have to import a lot of goods.  But before you buy a country’s exports you have to exchange your currency first.  And when you’ve devalued your currency by printing money to pay for a welfare state you don’t get a lot of foreign currency in exchange.  Because your money is worthless.  And no one outside the country wants it.  For what are they going to spend it on?  It’s not like Venezuela has a booming export market to shop at.  So when you can’t exchange bolivars for US dollars you have to get US dollars some other way.  On the black market.  So you have a currency that has some purchasing power to pay for those US exports.

So inflation, scarcity and the cost of black market US dollars adds a lot of costs to businesses.  Which they have to recover somehow.  And the only way they can is through higher prices.  Which hurt the poor the most.  For they’re not getting big pay raises to keep pace with rising prices.  In fact, Venezuelans don’t even want to hold on to their own currency.  Because it’s losing purchasing power at such a great rate that the longer they hold on to it the less it will buy.  Which is why they want those imports.  Because you can’t inflate manufactured goods.  So they hold their value.  Unlike a savings account full of bolivars.

It’s not the bourgeois capitalist parasites making life miserable for the poor.  It’s Venezuela’s socialist policies.  Just as similar policies caused people to flee Cuba on rickety boats to get to America.  And East Germans risked their lives to climb over the Berlin Wall.  If you put two societies close together, one socialist and one capitalist, the flow of people between the two will be from the socialist state to the capitalist state.  Which is why socialist states are often police states.  So they can prevent their people from escaping their socialist paradise.

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Venezuelan Women robbed at Gunpoint for their Hair despite living in a Socialist Utopia

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 10th, 2013

Week in Review

The American left loves Venezuela.  Because they are a socialist nation.  Where they put people before profits.  And everyone links arms and sings Kumbaya.  As everyone lives in harmony in the Venezuelan paradise.  Life just doesn’t get better than life in Venezuela (see Venezuelan thieves stealing hair to sell as hair extensions by Alasdair Baverstock posted 8/9/2013 on The Telegraph).

In Maracaibo, Venezuela’s second largest city, the gang is targeting women whose flowing locks, once removed, can be made into natural hair extensions and sold to beauty salons.

The robbers operate by holding their victims at gunpoint and ordering them to tie their hair into a ponytail, before removing it with a razor blade.

Hard to believe.  In a country where everyone has everything why would there be any criminals?  For in the West they say criminality is a result of income disparity.  The anger that rises between the haves and the have nots.  That spills out into criminal activity.  Yet here is criminality.  In a country where there is no income disparity.  Where everyone has everything.

“The demand for hair extensions has risen by 30 per cent since the crimes started”, said Jhonatan Morales, a beauty salon owner who spoke to state television channel Globovision.

“The market is more competitive now. We judge the hair on its tone, condition and colour”, he said. “But my salon doesn’t buy from street vendors as we don’t know where the hair has come from”.

So these Venezuelan women are being robbed of their hair at gunpoint for other Venezuelan women.  Guess hair extensions are the one thing the socialist government of Venezuela doesn’t provide for their people.  So apart from hair extensions everyone has everything.  Because everyone is equal in Venezuela.  Where there is no income disparity.  And no crime.  Only singing of Kumbaya.  Except for when it comes to hair extensions.  For apparently the socialist utopia in Venezuela doesn’t eliminate hair disparity.

Maracaibo, a city of four million close to the Colombian border, is particularly prone to gang crime given the large amount of smuggling which occurs in the area.

Gang activity in the region is funded by the purchasing of basic goods such as lavatory paper and rice, the prices of which are heavily subsidized by Venezuela’s socialist government. The goods are then smuggled across the border into Colombia where they are sold for a profit at normal market rates.

Not only do they have hair disparity which leads to hair crime they have the worst of all criminals.  Profiteers.  Who instead of singing Kumbaya for having everything they ever could want in their socialist utopia turn to greed.  Taking advantage of the state subsidies to turn a profit.  Something that’s not supposed to happen in a socialist utopia.  That kind of stuff is only supposed to happen in the greedy capitalist world.  Where they put profits before people.  Leading to income disparity.  And crime.  Where the people don’t link arms and sing Kumbaya.  Because life is so wretched there.  Unlike in Venezuela.  As long as you don’t walk the streets with beautiful, lustrous hair.

So maybe income disparity isn’t the source of crime.  For socialism hasn’t eliminated crime in Venezuela.  But you know what it has done?  Allowed great sweeping electoral victories for the candidate that promises to make life better for the have nots.  And if politicians ride to office by promising to make life better for the multitudes of the have nots do you really think they will make life better for the have nots?  And eliminate the great electoral advantage they have?  Probably not.  Which explains why there are always have nots.  And always will be.  Income disparity or not.

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Venezuela may put People before Profits but they have no Toilet Paper

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 18th, 2013

Week in Review

The American left wants to have the economic system they have in Venezuela.  Where they put people before profits.  To prevent evil corporations from getting rich.  While exploiting their workers.  And overcharging their customers.  You see, that kind of thing just doesn’t happen in Venezuela.  Because they put people before profits (see So, Venezuela Has a Toilet-Paper Shortage (Don’t Laugh. Seriously.) by Jordan Weissmann posted 5/16/2013 on The Atlantic).

Venezuela is now suffering from a government-induced toilet paper shortage. The situation has become politically dire enough that the government has promised to import 50 million rolls to calm shoppers.

For those familiar with the Bolivarian Republic’s less-than-sterling economic record of late, this won’t come as a surprise. The country, while relatively wealthy by developing-world standards, has been suffering through a chronic shortfall of everything from groceries to asthma inhalers, resulting in desperate lines of shoppers and a healthy black market trade in kitchen staples like flour.

In the United States about the only toilet paper shortage people are familiar with is when they drop trou in a public restroom without looking to see if there was toilet paper first.  Why do people do this in the United States?  Because we take toilet paper for granted.  And always expect it to be there.  Because we are not socialists.  We’re capitalists.  And being a capitalist means you never have to see an empty shelf when buying toilet paper.

So why do socialists have such a difficult time buying toilet paper?  Because they put people before profits.  Which sounds good but is only code for dictatorship.  Where the dictator lives well.  As there is always enough for the privileged few.  But to sustain this privileged position a dictator has to steal from his people.

In 2003, then President Hugo Chavez slammed currency controls into place to prevent money from fleeing the country while government seized land and corporate assets. Those rules have made it harder to buy imports. Meanwhile, price caps meant to make basic staples affordable to the poor are so low that, for many products, they don’t pay for the cost of production.

Nobody’s going to make toilet paper if they’ll lose money selling it.

Price caps make things cost less than the prevailing market price.  Which encourages people to over consume.  Just as Nixon’s price controls led to gas shortages in the United States.  While at the same time the price caps force suppliers to sell below the prevailing market price.  Which is often below their costs.  So while people are clearing shelves off suppliers are not replenishing those shelves.  Leading to shortages.

To buy imports you have to first exchange your currency for the currency of the country you’re buying from.  For U.S. companies accept the U.S. dollar for its exports.  Not the bolívar fuerte.  Venezuela’s currency controls prevent Venezuelan businesses from exchanging their currency.  Making it impossible for them to buy the imports they need.  So they have to throttle back production.  Making it more difficult to restock those empty shelves.  Forcing the people to go without toilet paper.  While Hugo Chavez died a billionaire.

This is what happens when you put people before profits.  You make it possible for a charismatic dictator to impoverish the people he champions.  Which is impossible under laissez-faire capitalism.  For businesses can buy the imports they need.  And they can sell at a price that covers their costs.  Which keeps the shelves in capitalist countries overflowing with the goods people want to buy.  While wannabe dictators can’t seize land and corporate assets.  But have to work for a living.  Like everyone else.

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Hugo Chavez is Dead but the Bizarre Conspiracy Theories live On

Posted by PITHOCRATES - March 17th, 2013

Week in Review

The United Nations isn’t too happy about President Obama’s drone policy.  Killing suspected terrorists anywhere in the world.  As well as a few innocent bystanders here or there.  It smacks a bit of imperialism.  And it may be a little extralegal.  But apparently terrorists and innocent bystanders aren’t the only people President Obama is signaling out for special treatment.  What they call extreme prejudice in the covert ops business.  Apparently he’s looking at presidential candidates, too.  At least, according to Venezuela’s Maduro (see Venezuela’s Maduro accuses U.S. of “plot” to kill rival by Daniel Wallis posted 3/17/2013 on Reuters).

Venezuela’s acting president urged U.S. President Barack Obama to stop what he called a plot by the Pentagon and the Central Intelligence Agency to kill his opposition rival and trigger a coup ahead of an April 14 election.

Nicolas Maduro said the plan was to blame the murder on the OPEC nation’s government and to “fill Venezuelans with hate” as they prepare to vote following the death of socialist leader Hugo Chavez.

Maduro first mentioned a plot against his rival, Henrique Capriles, last week. He blamed it on former Bush administration officials Roger Noriega and Otto Reich. Both rejected the claim as untrue, outrageous and defamatory.

“I call on President Obama – Roger Noriega, Otto Reich, officials at the Pentagon and at the CIA are behind a plan to assassinate the right-wing presidential candidate to create chaos,” Maduro said in a TV interview broadcast on Sunday…

Capriles, who kicked off the opposition’s bid to drum up support with big rallies in the provinces over the weekend, said Maduro would be to blame if anything happened to him.

No matter what you think about President Obama or his liberal use of drones to kill people this is a pretty outrageous claim.  First of all, the Left loved Hugo Chavez.  And they don’t come further left than President Obama.  He’s trying to take the United States in the direction of Venezuela.  So he wouldn’t kill the guy that wasn’t a socialist to foment chaos to bring down the one that was.  He would just do it to bring down the right-wing candidate.  If he did that sort of thing.  Which, of course, he doesn’t.  Unless Capriles was a member of an al Qaeda cell.  Or he had the misfortune of being too close to someone who was.  Then all bets are off.

I’m joking, of course.  It’s probably what Capriles said.  If anything happens to him to cause him to lose the election it will probably not be the fault of President Obama.  But the fault of the one who wins the election.  Who may use some campaign tactics that may be a bit extralegal.  Let’s just hope it doesn’t come to that.

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Hugo Chávez was loved by Venezuelans, Sean Penn, Oliver Stone, Michael Moore and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad but mocked on SNL

Posted by PITHOCRATES - March 10th, 2013

Week in Review

Justin Timberlake made fun of Hugo Chávez last Saturday night on SNL.  Impersonating Sir Elton John he sang a modified version of Candle in the Wind.  Some of the lines went like this:

You called George Bush the devil, when you spoke at the UN, you said he smelled like sulfur, and you called him Mr. Danger

And it seems to me you lived your life like a candle in the wind, If a candle could pull out two pistols at a press conference

And you said the U.S. caused earthquakes, and you outlawed Coke Zero

You helped to make your country the kidnapping capital of the world, but you also increased milk production by almost 50%

And it seems to me you once gave a speech where you encouraged shorter showers, and another thing you said was capitalism killed Mars

Yes you believed in a civilization that existed on the surface of Mars, but capitalism killed it all when it was introduced to Mars

Funny.  Because it’s true.  Albeit a bit disrespectful for the recently departed.  One thing for sure, though, when Justin Timberlake hosts SNL you will not be disappointed.  He’s talented.  The man can do it all.  And he’s got guts to sing a song like this about an icon of the American Left.  For there are some who revere Hugo Chávez (see Sean Penn, Michael Moore and Oliver Stone pay tribute to Hugo Chávez by Ben Child posted 3/6/2013 on the guardian).

Penn, who first met Chávez in Venezuela in 2007 and attended a candlelit vigil for the stricken firebrand in Bolivia in December, bemoaned the politician’s lack of credibility in North America. “Today the people of the United States lost a friend it never knew it had. And poor people around the world lost a champion,” he said in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter. “I lost a friend I was blessed to have. My thoughts are with the family of President Chávez and the people of Venezuela.” Penn added: “Venezuela and its revolution will endure under the proven leadership of vice president [Nicolas] Maduro.”

Oliver Stone, who celebrated Chávez’s presidency and the successes of left wing politicians across South America in his 2009 documentary South of the Border, said the Venezuelan leader would be remembered fondly by historians as a champion of the poor. “I mourn a great hero to the majority of his people and those who struggle throughout the world for a place,” he said in a statement. “Hated by the entrenched classes, Hugo Chávez will live forever in history. My friend, rest finally in a peace long earned.”

Michael Moore, who met Chávez at the Venice film festival in 2009 and posted pictures of himself with the president, tweeted: “Hugo Chávez declared the oil belonged 2 the ppl. He used the oil $ 2 eliminate 75% of extreme poverty, provide free health & education 4 all. That made him dangerous. US approved of a coup to overthrow him even though he was a democratically-elected president.”

High praise indeed.  You would be hard-pressed to find someone saying anything nicer about Chávez.  Unless you listened to someone who hates the United States even more than Hugo Chávez (see Ahmadinejad: Chávez Will Return by The New York Times posted 3/6/2013 on The Daily Beast).

Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad posted a letter on his website, promising that the deceased president would “come again” with Jesus and a Muslim prophet expected to redeem mankind. Ahmadinejad called for a day of national mourning for the “Latin American anti-imperialist figure.”

How about that?  The Hollywood Left loved Chávez as much as America’s number one enemy.  A man who suppressed his people during the Green Revolution.  In response to voting irregularities that kept him in power.  Something that happened in Venezuela, too.  Suggesting Chávez  was not as loved as some say.  Or as much as the Hollywood Left loved him.   Apparently, those who loved Chávez the most were those who didn’t have to live in his socialist utopia.

Many of the Venezuelan people did love Chávez, though. Because Chávez was a populist.  He nurtured a cult of personality.  He made the people love him.  Because he convinced the people that he was their champion.  As Penn, Stone and Moore believed.  Despite Chávez dying with a net worth of $1 billion.  Siphoned off the top of all that oil money that went to the people.  To eliminate extreme poverty.  That’s right.  He acquired wealth just like George W. Bush did.  From oil.  Only Bush did it in the free market.  While Chávez did it by just confiscating it.  Like all anti-capitalist socialists are wont to do.  Because they are the champion of the people.  Where everyone is equal.  Only some are more equal than others.

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Hugo Chavez returns to his Socialist Utopia (Venezuela) after Medical Treatment in Cuba

Posted by PITHOCRATES - February 23rd, 2013

Week in Review

The American Left loves Hugo Chavez.  Because he is an anti-capitalist socialist.  In Venezuela they put people before profits.  And the Left loves that.  For it is only under socialism where there is true equality.  Where everyone is equal.  Rich and poor.  Government official and descamisado.  And everyone gets the best of everything.  Something the America Left is striving for in the United States.  So American can be as just and as fair as Venezuela (see Hugo Chavez Returns Home After Cancer Surgery posted 2/18/2013 on Sky News).

President Hugo Chavez has returned home to Venezuela after more than two months of medical treatment following cancer surgery.

Mr Chavez’s return from Cuba was announced in a series of messages on his Twitter account…

The 58-year-old, who has been in power for more than 14 years, was first diagnosed with cancer in 2011…

Mr Maduro said Mr Chavez will continue his treatment at the Carlos Arvelo Military Hospital in Caracas.

Of course, Hugo Chavez is more equal than everyone else.  When he gets cancer he goes to the finest health care available in the socialist world.  Cuba.  While the ordinary Venezuelan must suffer the Venezuelan health care system.  Which isn’t very good when it comes to treating cancer.  For Hugo Chavez didn’t get treated in Venezuela.

Note that Hugo Chavez has been making Venezuela a better place for 14 years.  A more just place.  And a more fair place.  Something the American Left applauds.  Because ordinary Venezuelans are better off than ordinary Americans.  For ordinary Venezuelans are pampered with cradle to the grave socialism.  Of course, for some, the grave comes a lot sooner than some would want.  Why?  Because after making Venezuela a better place for 14 years he still hasn’t built a decent hospital in the country.  And you know the Venezuelan health care system for the people is bad when he goes to a military hospital for his follow-up care.  For in the United States the better hospitals are not on military bases.  There in our cities.  Where they are available to everyone.  Unlike the ordinary Venezuelan pampered with cradle to the grave socialism.

The American Left can bad-mouth the American health care system all they want and laud Hugo Chavez till the cows come home but not one of them will leave the U.S. to get their health care needs in that Socialist utopia.  Venezuela.  Even if Hugo Chavez lets them use the military hospital in Caracas.  And given the choice the ordinary Venezuelan would probably choose the American health care system over their own.  And probably over the Cuban health care system as well.  For when it comes to socialist utopias they’re not very utopian.

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Used Cars put a Crimp in Venezuela’s Inflationary Policies

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 27th, 2013

Week in Review

The American Left attacks capitalism for being unfair and evil because it puts profits before people.  Whereas socialism puts people before profits.  Where people give according to ability and take according to need.  Fair, yes?  In the way it makes people want to link arms and sing Kumbaya.  Because everyone has everything they need.  Thanks to that redistribution of wealth.  And exactly how does that work?  Something like this.

An unemployed man with 8 children will get more from the government than a single woman with no children working 12-hour days 6 days a week.  She will have a lot of income the state can tax.  So she has a lot of ability.  While he will get a lot of state benefits.  Because he has a lot of need.  A smart person will look at this and quickly come to the understanding that working hard sucks.  While being a lay-about means you live comfortably on state benefits.  Paid for by people like that woman working 12-hour days 6 days a week.  So in true socialism it’s a contest to show as little ability and as much need as possible.

Sometimes there aren’t enough people to tax.  So to keep the people happy the state spends money it doesn’t have.  By printing more and more money.  Which is what Hugo Chavez did in Venezuela.  Actions which the American Left applaud.  As they applaud Hugo Chavez for putting people before profits.  For unabashedly embracing socialism.  And condemning capitalism.  So Venezuela should be a socialist utopia.  So is it?  Let’s take a look (see Venezuela Ready to Crack Down on Clunker Car Inflation Refuge by Corina Pons & Nathan Crooks posted 1/24/2013 on Bloomberg).

Automobiles purchased in Venezuela, South America’s largest oil exporter, typically gain in value the moment they are driven off the dealership lot. Facing 20.1 percent inflation and capital controls introduced in 2003 that limit the amount of bolivars citizens may take out of the country, Venezuelans invest in durable goods…

Venezuela’s consumer prices last month rose 3.5 percent, the fastest pace in 32 months, the central bank said Jan. 11. Venezuela has the third-highest inflation rate worldwide.

Chavez in 2012 ordered companies to cut prices of shampoo, soap and other personal care products to contain inflationary pressures…

Inflation rose after Chavez restricted dollar supplies in a bid to close a fiscal gap widened by spending before elections in October, in which he defeated challenger Henrique Capriles Radonski by more than 10 percentage points.

The lack of dollars has created shortages of goods that range from toilet paper to detergent and extend to automobiles. Suvinca, a Venezuelan state distributor of Chinese-made cars, posted a notice on its website yesterday that said it had run out of cars and suspended sales…

“The law won’t solve the problem, because it doesn’t resolve the fact that there is still little supply. It won’t reduce demand, either,” Garcia said. “A black market will be created very fast. Instead of solving the problem, it will make it worse…”

“With this law, it will not be permissible to sell a car above the maximum suggested price, and a used car can never cost more than a new one,” Amoroso said. “Notaries will be prohibited from legalizing any transaction that is above the suggested price.”

When you print a lot of money it just makes your money worthless.  Which is why governments frown on people using their computer printers to make money.  If everyone did this money would lose its value.  For it would be as common place as leaves on the ground in autumn.  In countries with high inflation rates people want to spend their money as fast as they get it before it loses too much of its purchasing power.  For the real goods they buy will hold their value.  So it’s a safer place to put your savings.  Instead of in a bank.

The more bolivars (the Venezuelan currency) they print the less each bolivar is worth.  The more they depreciate the bolivar the faster people want to convert them into something that will hold its value.  Like cars.  If the bolivar loses half of its value it will take twice as many of them to buy a car.  So if you own a car its value in bolivars will soar the more of them they print.  Not that people want bolivars.  But they do want dollars.  And getting dollars by selling real goods avoids the inflation problem of the bolivar.  But it also helps to undermine the currency as no one wants to use it.  Or accept it in exchange for valuable goods.

Of course an easy solution to this problem is simply implementing price controls.  If you legally prevent prices from rising in response to runaway inflation problem solved, yes?  No.  Because if prices are held at artificially low levels people will buy so many of these items while the buying is good that these things will disappear from store shelves.  And if the store shelves are empty it doesn’t matter what prices are.  This is why there were gas lines in the Seventies.  Gas sales were so strong that gas stations ran out of gas.  And with prices below real market prices there wasn’t new supply coming on market to meet that excessive demand.  Because having to sell below your costs doesn’t encourage anyone to sell.  Except on the black market.  Where black market prices adjust market supply to market demand.  And everything is available for a price.

This is the socialist utopia that is Venezuela.  Only it’s not a utopia.  It just converts as many people with ability into people with need.  And when there are no longer enough people to tax to provide for those in need societies break down.  And governments collapse.  Unless you have a strong police state.  Which has been the hallmark of all social utopias that put people before profits.  Places like Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, the People’s Republic of China, North Korea, the communist countries of Eastern Europe, Cuba, etc.  Venezuela, too.

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Hugo Chávez leaves Socialist Venezuela for Cancer Surgery in Communist Cuba

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 9th, 2012

Week in Review

Hugo Chávez’s cancer is back.  He must return to communist Cuba for the quality health care he cannot get in socialist Venezuela.  Despite his hard work of turning Venezuela into a socialist utopia.  And you know it has to be bad there as this is Chávez’s 4th trip to Cuba.  So he is fully aware of the quality there.  Which may be good.  But those who can afford it go to the United States.  They don’t go to Cuba.  As Chávez would probably too had he not spent his life attacking American capitalism (see Hugo Chávez names successor after confirming need for cancer surgery by Virginia Lopez posted 12/9/2012 on the guardian).

The Venezuelan president, Hugo Chávez, has for the first time designated a successor, after admitting he needs to undergo another operation for cancer and may be unable to return to power.

Chávez is to return to Havana to undergo surgery for a fourth time and said in a broadcast late on Saturday night that he wished his vice-president, Nicolás Maduro, to be his successor.

The announcement comes two months after the charismatic leader, who had declared himself free of cancer in July, was re-elected for a fourth term in October by a comfortable margin.

Hugo Chávez has been president of Venezuela for about 13 years.  While in office he’s attacked capitalism and championed socialism.  He insulted President George W. Bush.  And praised President Barack Obama.  Because President Obama is making America more like Venezuela than George W. Bush did.  And how great is Venezuela after some 13 years of Hugo Chávez making it better with socialism?  You have to go to Cuba for surgery.  If you’re important enough to get that kind of special treatment.

If you have to go to Cuba for surgery perhaps socialism is not the direction you want to take the country.  Perhaps capitalism is the better economic system.  And national health care (i.e., Obamacare) is something we should avoid.  For if Hugo Chávez could not staff at least one hospital with a Western-quality surgical suite imagine the quality of their national health care.  And their medical schools.  Which is not a commentary on the Venezuelan people.  Who probably would excel in Europe, Britain, Australia, Canada, the United States or any other Western economy.  But whose human capital is left to wither on the vine in Venezuela.  As socialism is one of the worst economic systems to encourage people to do great things.

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