Well done there, well done

A wave of demonstrations has erupted across Venezuela as angry citizens flout lockdown restrictions to demand an end to worsening shortages of everything from electricity and water to fuel and household supplies.

I’m told that (via the comments section at Samizdata) the Venezuelan minimum wage is now, at the free market exchange rate, under $1 a month. That’s under one United States dollar a month.

Socialism will make ye rich indeed.

11 thoughts on “Well done there, well done”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    Well socialism has been proven not to make people rich. But it does make them equally poor. More or less.

    That in itself is reason for some people to support it. The traitor taking Moscow’s blood money, Michael Foot, said that the best time in Britain was 1940. Sure everyone was poor but they were pulling together. I assume he meant 1941. When they were pulling for Moscow to capture Warsaw.

  2. God how sad. I worked in that country back in the day, it was a leetle dodgy then (but considered far safer than colombia which i was not allowed to visit) but there was a big professional middle class. Memories of two colleagues inviting me to join their gym to go to a spinning class. First time i’d ever heard that term. (said no, obvs)

  3. ‘A wave of demonstrations has erupted across Venezuela as angry citizens flout lockdown restrictions to demand an end to worsening shortages of everything’

    Note the socialism. “Government, give us MORE!”

  4. I read of a Venezuelan economist who came up with a new index to demonstrate just how screwed the country was; how many calories a day one could buy on the minimum wage, which happened to be pretty much identical to the median wage. He reckoned at the time it was about 700kcal…

  5. But you don’t need a wage when the Socialist State provides everything you need….

    Oh wait.. [/sarc]

  6. Well socialism has been proven not to make people rich. But it does make them equally poor. More or less.

    In real socialist states 99.99% of the populace are indeed ‘equal’, with the doctor getting paid the same as the bin emptier. But the top 0.01%, the nomenklatura, live a life that is unimaginably different.

    As Tim regularly points out, that is no longer true (if it ever was) under capitalism. Jeff Bezos has a hell of a lot more wealth than I ever will, but (except, perhaps, by purchasing Veblen goods, which he appears not to go in for, to any great extent) he struggles to differentiate his lifestyle from mine. He can have multiple residences and cars, but he can only live in or drive one at a time, and a Dacia Sandero costs new, under £7,000 – while an old banger that can be picked up for a few hundred quid will still provide reliable transport. He has access to exactly the same Internet as I do … etc etc.

  7. @ SMFS
    What?!?
    In 1940 the Communists were sabotaging the British war effort: Churchill is reported to have said that the biggest benefit from Hitler’s invasion of Russia and the latter entering the War was that the Communists stopped sabotage in the UK’s docks.

  8. Bloke in North Dorset

    Ah but it’s not real socialism – that’s never been tried.

    Not least because Marx never got round to explaining exactly what he meant by socialism and communism and how he expected it to work in practice. Wise man in some ways because it meant he never got bogged down in the minutiae and could keep on pumping out the philosophy. The flip side is that every tin pot wannabe dictator could claim to be implementing socialism on the road to communism supported by the gullible cheer leaders like Jones.

  9. Bloke in North Dorset

    I read of a Venezuelan economist who came up with a new index to demonstrate just how screwed the country was; how many calories a day one could buy on the minimum wage, which happened to be pretty much identical to the median wage. He reckoned at the time it was about 700kcal…

    I think you refer to Ricard Hausmann, Minister of Planning of Venezuela (1992-1993) and a member of the Board of the Central Bank of Venezuela, I first came across him talking about in on NPR’s Planet Money podcast (dated 17/12/2018):

    HAUSMANN: The other thing we did is we measured it just in eggs. How many eggs can you buy? Well, before, you know, in a day, you could buy several dozen eggs. Now you can buy two eggs. That’s it – two eggs. And that was important for us to calculate because it’s not just calories. It’s also proteins that people need. So, you know, right now people in Venezuela can buy two eggs. Recently people have calculated, what is the cost of a Big Mac – how long does it take you to work to make enough to buy a Big Mac? And in Venezuela right now, that’s a month and a half.

    GARCIA: Two eggs a day, or, to afford a Big Mac, a Venezuelan worker would have to save every single bolivar he earned for a month and a half.

    Its only 10minutes and worth a listen.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *