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Venezuela Thread

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7 minutes ago, RedmondLonghorn said:

FIFY

Fascism is bad, but so is poorly regulated capitalism. All things in balance.

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3 hours ago, RedmondLonghorn said:

Venezuela has been dysfunctional for a long time, that's true.

But the Chavezista "miracle" turning the country into a truly failed state isn't a coincidence either.

Chavez truly was the icing on the cake but there were serious issues before he came along - in fact those serious issues made it possible for his populist message to sweep him to power in the first place. Once there, he held on, as populist dictators are wont to do. 

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2 hours ago, timschochet said:

You're depressing me. Stop it. 

Thems the facts

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3 minutes ago, msommer said:

Chavez truly was the icing on the cake but there were serious issues before he came along - in fact those serious issues made it possible for his populist message to sweep him to power in the first place. Once there, he held on, as populist dictators are wont to do. 

That makes Maduro a rancid cherry on top. 

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Just now, Ilov80s said:

That makes Maduro a rancid cherry on top. 

Yeah, he clearly lacks in the prime requisite for a populist dictator: Charisma

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2 minutes ago, msommer said:

Thems the facts

It will be interesting to see if the opposition is able to amount enough resistance to create a full scale civil war and then will China and Russia back Maduro? Will any western countries back the other side?

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1 minute ago, Ilov80s said:

It will be interesting to see if the opposition is able to amount enough resistance to create a full scale civil war and then will China and Russia back Maduro? Will any western countries back the other side?

I'd have chosen another word than interesting. That aside I do not believe that the superpowers will actively show support any of the parties.

Three options: The Venezuelan army will quash an uprising, make a coup or splinter. Only in the latter case will we see something akin to civil war.

I don't think we have enough data to determine which it will be.

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11 minutes ago, msommer said:

Yeah, he clearly lacks in the prime requisite for a populist dictator: Charisma

He didn't need it.  Chavez' government had become so totalitarian it no longer required a charismatic leader.  It just needed someone willing to be ruthless.

Edited by jonessed
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Just now, jonessed said:

He didn't need it.  Chavez' government had become so totalitarian it no longer required a charismatic leader.  It just needed someone willing to be ruthless.

Well, the people on the streets clearly disagree

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3 hours ago, Ilov80s said:

Right but perhaps people like Castro never come to power if it was not for the dictator and criminal Batista running amok of democracy and the rights of the Cubans, selling anything he could to America for a profit at the expense of the Cuban people. He was no better than Castro.The far right, far left, extreme socialism and extreme capitalism are all bad imo and certain to bring ruin to the average person.

I'm not going to struggle over wording (is 'no better/worse') because I agree with you at essence. I think it does show how hard it is to be (in every other administration) US President. What could we have done to make things better there pre-Chavez? Was Venezuela really any more decadent than say Colombia or Chile? I wish the best for the people there. I do think there is something to vast inequities and oppression always carrying this risk.

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The major difference in Venezuela vs Cuba or even Nicaragua is the narco traffic that passes through that country.  Not only is the government skimming all the oil revenues (which have fallen drastically) into their pockets, but they've allowed they army to make a mint from the transport and protection of narcotics. 

Colombia never became a true narco state, but Venezuela is at this point. Truly sad. 

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I'd like to ask the mods to merge this and the other Venezuela thread, and have no problem ceding title and thread upkeep duties to prefontaine. Payce.

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Quote

Vote tampering claims jolt Venezuela on eve of new assembly

Revelations on Wednesday that turnout figures were apparently manipulated in a crucial vote for an all-powerful constituent assembly in Venezuela cast a deeper shadow over the controversial body shortly before it was to convene.

The official count of voters in Sunday's election was off by at least 1 million, according to the head of the voting technology firm Smartmatic — a finding certain to sow further discord over a body that has been granted vast authority to rewrite Venezuela's constitution and override every branch of government.

Results recorded by Smartmatic's systems and those reported by Venezuela's National Electoral Council show "without any doubt" that the official turnout figure of more than 8 million voters was tampered with, company CEO Antonio Mugica told reporters in London. The international software company has provided voting technology in Venezuela since 2004.

Mugica said there was a 1 million vote discrepancy, but he did not specify whether his company's figures showed 1 million fewer, or 1 million more, voters participated in the election.

"Even in moments of deep political conflict and division we have been satisfied with the voting process and the count has been completely accurate" previously in Venezuela, Mugica said. "It is, therefore, with the deepest regret that we have to report that the turnout figures on Sunday, 30 July, for the constituent assembly in Venezuela were tampered with." ...

- ABC

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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2 hours ago, RedmondLonghorn said:

I realize the situation in Venezuela has moved past being just an economic disaster, but this chart...man.

From what I've read GDP has dropped by 1/3rd since Chavez took over.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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5 hours ago, SaintsInDome2006 said:

From what I've read GDP has dropped by 1/3rd since Chavez took over.

 During his tenure, that fall was primarily due to the decreased value of oil. Lots of economic problems could be papered over with oil at $100.  He obviously made the situation tremendously worse through the nationalizing of many industries and consumable goods companies.  Also oil production decreased due to poor management and misinvestment. 

I went there first in 2004, then again in 2007, then again in 2009, and finally in 2012/3.  That last trip was with my 8 month old twins.   I haven't been back since due to the lack of food, medicine, and rule of law. It's been tough to changes in less than a decade.  In 2004, I walked (cautiously) around Caracas and Maracaibo during the day. Now?  No friggin way. 

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1 hour ago, SaintsInDome2006 said:

This is pretty fascinating

Quote

the senator accused the Venezuelan official of involvement in drug trafficking, which Cabello Rondon has denied.

Quote

“CABELLO RONDON did indeed issue an order ... to have Senator Rubio assassinated,” 

What better way to prove you aren't involved in drug trafficking than to put out a hit on the guy that disrespected you. 

This makes me think of the suggestion to assassinate Kim. How quickly would this narco-thug regime be taken out if they actually attempted something like this? We'd probably be sure to take Rondon alive just to send him to The Hague to stand trial. 

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>>Financial and political analysts said the new sanctions would not represent a lethal blow to Mr. Maduro’s government. But many say its survival over the next year is in serious doubt, partly because of continuing problems raising money to pay interest on its onerous debts while paying for food imports.<<

- Let's hope this proves to be the case. What a disaster.

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5 minutes ago, SaintsInDome2006 said:

>>Financial and political analysts said the new sanctions would not represent a lethal blow to Mr. Maduro’s government. But many say its survival over the next year is in serious doubt, partly because of continuing problems raising money to pay interest on its onerous debts while paying for food imports.<<

- Let's hope this proves to be the case. What a disaster.

Never underestimate the extent "leaders" will let the masses starve to maintain their own grip on power. 

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The inflation is increíble right now. Basically only that ultra wealthy can afford anything these days. Even getting gasoline can take 3 hours. 

Imagine if a hurricane or other natural disaster hit...

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This thread should be bumped every time someone says that Bernie Sanders is a legitimate candidate to lead this country. Or when anyone thinks that celebrities know jack #### about politics. Looking at you Sean Penn, Danny Glover, Oliver Stone, and Michael Moore link. Where are these celebs now?

Protesters in Venezuela are rioting over pork

Pregnant Venezuelan teen fatally shot in holiday food line

Oil Rich Venezuela is Out of Gasoline

Press freedom is dying in Venezuela

 

#ThanksSocialism

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Maybe it should be bumped whenever there's notable examples of kleptocracy and cult of personality because those are the root cause of this situation, not socialism. Otherwise, you'd see similar things in Denmark or Finland.

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9 hours ago, The Z Machine said:

Maybe it should be bumped whenever there's notable examples of kleptocracy and cult of personality because those are the root cause of this situation, not socialism. Otherwise, you'd see similar things in Denmark or Finland.

Technically what we have here in Denmark is not socialism. But neither is what they have in Venezuela.

And I agree with you that kleptocracy and populism are at the root of the issues in Venezuela (I added populism as unsure whether the populistic aims to keep ruling was inherently included in the term kleptocracy)

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20 hours ago, The Z Machine said:

Maybe it should be bumped whenever there's notable examples of kleptocracy and cult of personality because those are the root cause of this situation, not socialism. 

Venezuela has a version of socialism, as have many other failed states.  Socialism almost always settles in as a two class system - those equal at the bottom and the ruling class equals.

Edited by Sand

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I lived and worked in Caracas in 1994/1995 .......... a whole different world/society

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The infant malnutrition is horrid. Children literally starving to death. What can we do about it though?

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1 hour ago, Gawain said:

The infant malnutrition is horrid. Children literally starving to death. What can we do about it though?

nothing much unless you want the United States to country build more

when I was there, it was crazy all the people sitting in the streets, smoking, drinking and doing absolutely nothing productive 

of course the Govt and socialism is what truly has killed that country IMO

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5 hours ago, Gawain said:

The infant malnutrition is horrid. Children literally starving to death. What can we do about it though?

Always a hard choice with despots like we have here.  Support the population and you help solidify the leadership that has decimated the country.  Don't and people suffer.

In the long term the only thing that makes sense is for leadership to step down/be thrown out.  If new leadership put in strong controls on private property (i.e. didn't appropriate companies as this one had) there could be a lot of money flowing in to increase oil flow and revenues.  Right now they're stripping every dollar they can from the oil revenues to support other causes - to the point that they can't afford to buy the light crude they need to mix with their heavy crude. Thus they can't refine their heavy crude. It's a textbook instruction manual on how to destroy a country, step by step.  

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The economic shifts in Venezeula over the last 15 years have been titanic, mostly due to poor investment in the economic engine (oil production) and thinking that $100 oil was permanent.

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They're down to the government trying to barter diamonds and other (probably illusory)  goods for medicine. 

Hard to see how this gets worse.   I expect a coup soon. 

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11 hours ago, Sand said:

They're down to the government trying to barter diamonds and other (probably illusory)  goods for medicine. 

Hard to see how this gets worse.   I expect a coup soon. 

I expected one a year ago, but it didn't happen. I guess the military brass is still getting their cut from the drug trade.

I honestly don't know what it will take to topple that government. I saw a pixie picture yesterday of my FIL's birthday party. Two things struck me: 1) everyone looked skinnier than I remember, clothes fitting looser, etc. Not malnourished, but not a good look. 2) there was no one under 55 in the photos. All those people in the family have left.

Sad. Let's hope for peaceful change, and soon.

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:popcorn: 

NBC News‏Verified account @NBCNews

FollowingFollowing @NBCNews

More

Reuters: While Maduro was speaking about Venezuela’s economy, the audio suddenly went. He and others on the podium suddenly looked up, looking startled. The camera then panned to scores of soldiers who started running, before the transmission was cut.

4:00 PM - 4 Aug 2018

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1 minute ago, Bucky86 said:

:popcorn: 

NBC News‏Verified account @NBCNews

FollowingFollowing @NBCNews

More

Reuters: While Maduro was speaking about Venezuela’s economy, the audio suddenly went. He and others on the podium suddenly looked up, looking startled. The camera then panned to scores of soldiers who started running, before the transmission was cut.

4:00 PM - 4 Aug 2018

Sounds straight from a horror flick.

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Conflict News‏ @Conflicts

FollowingFollowing @Conflicts

More

Conflict News Retweeted Roman Camacho

MORE: An armed drone dropped explosives near President Maduro, injuring 7 people. Maduro reportedly unharmed.

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On 1/2/2018 at 2:16 PM, Stealthycat said:

I lived and worked in Caracas in 1994/1995 .......... a whole different world/society

I’ve heard that Venezuela had the highest income in CA/SA/Carib once.

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31 minutes ago, Bucky86 said:

Conflict News‏ @Conflicts

FollowingFollowing @Conflicts

More

Conflict News Retweeted Roman Camacho

MORE: An armed drone dropped explosives near President Maduro, injuring 7 people. Maduro reportedly unharmed.

Coup attempt, he’ll of a thing.

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3 minutes ago, SaintsInDome2006 said:

I’ve heard that Venezuela had the highest income in CA/SA/Carib once.

It did. But the wealth distribution grew increasingly wide, and the politicians that ran the alternated power before Chávez really only brief to enrich their buddies, albeit within a society that operated with rules and laws. Chávez upended that order, promising to give the people that were only getting crumbs a voice and access to more of the country's wealth.

What happened is that Chávez wrecked the economy because he and his advisors didn't understand how it worked.  He gave the poor more, that's true, but these benefits didn't last as the largess was unsustainable, especially when combined with terrible fiscal policy and more importantly expropriating many of the most productive industries and private companies and running them into the ground by installing cronies who didn't know anything.

It's a sad, sad tale of what happens when the have nots get some power and invest it in a cult of personality that makes terrible decisions.

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3 minutes ago, The Z Machine said:

It did. But the wealth distribution grew increasingly wide, and the politicians that ran the alternated power before Chávez really only brief to enrich their buddies, albeit within a society that operated with rules and laws. Chávez upended that order, promising to give the people that were only getting crumbs a voice and access to more of the country's wealth.

What happened is that Chávez wrecked the economy because he and his advisors didn't understand how it worked.  He gave the poor more, that's true, but these benefits didn't last as the largess was unsustainable, especially when combined with terrible fiscal policy and more importantly expropriating many of the most productive industries and private companies and running them into the ground by installing cronies who didn't know anything.

It's a sad, sad tale of what happens when the have nots get some power and invest it in a cult of personality that makes terrible decisions.

His largesse on the oil contracts with his allies didn't help either, particularly when the prices started dropping

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4 minutes ago, The Z Machine said:

It's a sad, sad tale of what happens when the have nots get some power and invest it in a cult of personality that makes terrible decisions.

:hey:Can I make a comparison? It's orange.....

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1 minute ago, msommer said:

His largesse on the oil contracts with his allies didn't help either, particularly when the prices started dropping

Yup. Just compounding stupid for years on years.  I have watched that country and it's people slip into economic despair. The decline didn't happen overnight, but the rebuilding (whenever it starts) will take even longer as so many people have left and won't return.

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