How’s that socialism thing working out for Venezuela?

Any time some fool suggests that you embrace socialism you should ask them to name just one country in the world where socialism has been successfully implemented.

Venezuela is the current live exercise in socialism and it appears to be going not so well for the citizens of that country.

The Guardian reports: Quote:

Two years ago, shoppers in?Venezuela?would pay fruit sellers like Jos? Pacheco with boxfuls of 100 bol?var notes ? then the currency?s highest denomination. Now, thanks to rampant hyperinflation, even those are useless.

?It?s crazy to accept notes of 100, 500, or 1000 bol?vares,? said Pacheco, a wiry 61-year-old, whose humble stall clings to the fringe of one of the major markets in Ciudad Guayana, a city in Venezuela?s southern Bol?var state.

He now only accepts newly minted 100,000 bol?var notes, which due to demand are hard to come by. ?Otherwise it?s a box [full of notes] that afterwards we have to take to the bank,? he said.

Inflation in the embattled South American country could reach one million per cent by December,?the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned this week, reflecting an economic crisis comparable to Germany?s after the first world war and Zimbabwe?s at the beginning of the last decade.? End quote.

How utterly destructive, and the sad thing is that there is no need for it. Quote:

Venezuela, which has the largest proven oil reserves on the planet, is in the midst of a five-year crisis that has left many of its people?unable to afford food and medicine, with shelves bare in supermarkets. Crime rates continue to set records, with local residents fearful to leave the house at night.

Alejandro Werner, the head of the IMF?s western hemisphere department, elaborated on the grim prognosis. ?We expect the government to continue to run wide fiscal deficits financed entirely by an expansion in base money,? he wrote in a blogpost on Monday night, ?which will continue to fuel an acceleration of inflation as money demand continues to collapse.?? End quote.

Eventually, it is going to result in mass bloodshed, and the government will be overthrown, but that appears to still be a distant hope for many. Quote:

For ordinary Venezuelans, everyday life has become a struggle to survive.

?We are millionaires, but we are poor,? said Maigualida Oronoz, a 43-year-old nurse, who earns the minimum monthly salary of 5m bol?vares ? barely enough to buy a kilogram of meat to feed her children. ?We can just about eat, but if some health emergency happens we?ll die because the prices of medicines are sky-high and rise every day.?? End quote.

Perhaps Jacinda should make the living wage $5 million a month? Quote:

Maduro has alleged that private bankers are smuggling cash into neighbouring?Colombia?as part of an elaborate conspiracy to sabotage the economy, and he has rejected calls to lift currency controls.

One of Maduro?s plans to alleviate inflation is to issue new banknotes with the last three zeros lopped off, though economists say that will do little to help.

?It?s a cosmetic solution that won?t do anything,? said Asdrubal Oliveros, director of Ecoanalitica, a Caracas-based economics consultancy. ?With inflation this wild, in a few months we?ll be back in the situation.?? End quote.

Sounds like the Greens and their monetary policy. Quote:

Fed up with economic despair, masses of Venezuelans are simply fleeing. More than a million have arrived in Colombia, where, in the border city C?cuta, some entrepreneurial Venezuelans have begun weaving valueless banknotes into handbags that sell for 20,000 Colombian pesos (approximately ?5).

Back in Ciudad Guayana, Elisa Gonz?lez, a homemaker, relies on handouts sent from a sister that moved to Peru. ?I don?t know how much longer we can survive like this,? Gonz?lez said, adding that she had to put two daughters through school. ?With or without a job, what you earn isn?t enough to pay your kids? school fees ? and feeding yourself is mission impossible.?

Some analysts are hoping that the dizzying inflation rates could precipitate an end to Maduro?s regime. ?History tells that the governments that bring us inflation aren?t usually the ones to get us out of it,? said Oliveros at Ecoanalitica.

?Venezuela is regrettably headed for a lot of economic and political instability, even towards ungovernability, but there could be a political transition at that point,? said Oliveros. ?It would be very disorganised, of course, but in the end it would be a transition.? End quote.

Maybe Jacinda could send Helen Clark to Venezuela to give them the benefit of her sage advice.

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