Sobremesa Chronicles

TheDevilsExcrementBitching about our country is sort of our national sport. We all partake, more or less. But you know where I draw the line? When people say that “oil is a curse.”

Oil is a blessing. A huge one. Folks – oil is the only thing we’ve got goin’ for us.

Our agriculture is the pits pretty much everywhere outside of the southern fringes of Lake Maracaibo – and you know I’m right. Our fabled llanos are not really all that good for growing much. And let’s not even discuss the agricultural potential of Delta Amacuro or Bolívar. Cattle is the only thing we can grow in those places … y de vaina.

Fishing resources? Ni hablar. The Caribbean is just too warm for large-scale fishing potential. Name one Caribbean country where fishing is a main source of income… (crickets)

And let’s not even talk about tourism (we’re too violent for that) or innovation (not with our universities being drained of its talent).

If it weren’t for oil, we’d be Mali.

We have an abundance of a natural resource that thankfully is still in high demand. We have enough of it to last us ages. Think of all we can accomplish if we only administer this wealth right.

So let’s not berate the one thing that can get us out of this hole.

Take it away, Javier Corrales:

“Despite Maduro’s claims, Venezuela’s RIDDS (recession, inflation, dwindling foreign reserves, debt, and shortages) is not the result of external shocks, or even the local bourgeoisie’s “economic warfare.” It’s not the result of oil dependence, either. Neither does it have much to do with the economic incompetence of the country’s leaders, conspicuous as that factor may be. Venezuela’s economic woes started long before the current downturn in oil prices and the start of Maduro’s administration. Rather, the blame for Venezuela’s RIDDS must be laid on the nature of the country’s regime, which disincentivized its leaders from competently managing the oil boom, and is now crippling the government’s ability to respond to the downturn.”

It’s not the oil. It’s the kleptocrats we empower.

Have a great weekend, everyone.

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