Richard Gott on Venezuela

Good Lord, has the man learnt nothing in his life?

It sells a limited range of basic foodstuffs but would hardly justify the title of supermarket. Today, as everywhere throughout Caracas, powdered milk is in short supply, although no one knows for certain if this is the result of opposition manoeuvre and malice, or of government incompetence.

It\’s the result of fixing the price below the costs of production you dolt! If you force people to sell something for less than it costs them to produce it then they won\’t produce it. It\’s not a result of manoeuvre, malice nor even government incompetence. It\’s simply an iron rule of the universe.

Caracas has never been a "safe" city in recent decades, and some claim that the situation has got worse during the nine years that President Hugo Chávez has been in power.

Chávez believes that poverty is the root cause of crime, and that tackling poverty will solve the problem. Yet, while poverty rates have undoubtedly fallen, crime continues at a high level and some extra action will eventually be needed.

Sorry? You mean that Hugo isn\’t even providing order?

It is easy to denounce the levels of crime and corruption, and the incompetence of a government presiding over a revolutionary upheaval, just as it is easy to suggest that catastrophe may lie ahead.

Suggest? It\’s a certainty: you can tell because people are stupid enough to try and fix the prices of things below their cost of prduction.

The Chávez revolution remains the most original and democratic experiment in Latin America, and is clearly here to stay.

To stay you say? Let the oil price dip and Chavez is toast. If it stays high then he\’ll survive for a time, but idiot economics is idiot economics, however it\’s subsidised.

5 comments on “Richard Gott on Venezuela

  1. And yet look at the number of lefties who have their arguments handed to them on a plate and continue to go “la la la I’m not listening you greedy capitalist bastard cont p94”

  2. “Yet, while poverty rates have undoubtedly fallen, crime continues at a high level and some extra action will eventually be needed.”

    It isn’t really true to say that crime ‘remains’ at a high level. Venezuela wasn’t really a high crime country until Chavez became president as the homicide rate demonstrates:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_homicide_rate

    In 1998 it was 22 per 100000, yet by 2003 it had jumped to 59 per 100000. The fact that Venezueal is now more dangerous than Civil War torn Colombia says it all really.

  3. Chavez is just another power-hungry politician with a fine line in rhetoric, a touchy ego, and an inflated sense of his own intelligence and importance. He’ll go, or be assassinated, or – if he gets any fatter – have a heart attack, but not before hanging in there for a few more years, alienating neighbouring countries and bankrupting his own. Haven’t we seen all this before, in every country that falls for leftist ideology?

  4. I fear the effect on the region if Venezuela goes too far down the tubes before imploding. There’s already signs of an exodus of middle class people, and we really don’t need a refugee crisis.

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