“Like those people who win the lottery and go bankrupt within a year…”


Joanna Hausmann (yes relation) has a rant with a difference this week. As an introduction to Venezuela for the curious-but-clueless with five minutes to spare, it’s hard to do better. The bit about how price controls mean “people can’t afford to work” and how forcing people to sell stuff at below production cost is like “putting the whole country on an unpaid internship”, well that’s just exegetical genius. Awesome!

If you’re not familiar with Ms. Hausmann’s oeuvre, boy have I got a YouTube hole for you! La caraja es la Queen of Spanglish, which is obviously catnip to us. The one about Latin American accents is arrechísima. Cracks me right up.

Back to the serious one, though. Look, I know it feels wrong to fact check a rant like this —and though I can fully grasp the overpowering comedic imperative to keep kicking Luis Salas around— I do have to note that the crazy guy who doesn’t believe in inflation is, of course, no longer a minister (and as long as we’re out competing in the pedantry olympics, he wasn’t “finance minister” in the first place.)

That bit sucks, because when the rest of a piece is this pitch perfect, there’s just no reason to flub a detail like this. It’s not like she was short of targets, y’know? I mean c’mon, Joanna, we’re all still waiting for your Merentes rant.

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  1. El video no está mal pero es muy difícil superar al propio gobierno venezolano. En la portada de Ultimas Noticias de hoy se cuenta que “Han distribuido 200 mil kilos de papa a las universidades. El ministro Jorge Arreaza aseveró que en los últimos tres meses han entregado proteínas y que ahora viene la fase de carbohidratos”. Imagino entonces que en unas semanas distribuirán las grasas, dentro de un mes las vitaminas y los oligoelementos para luego volver a empezar ¿no?… Venezuela ahora mismo es un país verdaderamente delirante.

    • Hilarious video(s). Youtube hole indeed. I had not seen her before, so thank you for that!

      She also explains things in a manner that is at least “simple and dumbed down enough” that it will open up education about what’s going on here to a demographic that normally doesn’t read boring news articles about foreign countries they don’t care about, but will gladly watch the video (or any video) as a means of amusement. So I’d call that a win for Venezuelan awareness.

  2. Joanna is hilarious and speaks English like a native speaker. A very well-done rant, summarizing 17 years of Chavismo in 5 minutes. However, she speaks English very quickly, like a Noo Yawkuh or like the way people from the Caribbean speak Spanish. Most native English speakers would better absorb Joanna’s masterful rant if she were to speak somewhat slower. I once had a student who spoke English with the fluency of a native speaker, but who spoke very quickly, like Joanna. I asked him if he had family from the Caribbean. “Puerto Rico,” came the reply. [He didn’t speak w a Noo Yawk accent.]

    • Spanish is one of the languages in which the tempo of speech is the fastest , generally it takes the same amount of time for people in different languages to express the same things because when words are longer they just speak faster …….english having shorter words or expressions doenst require a fast tempo of speech ……topping spanish is japanese…!!

    • I don’t know about popular Spanish language youtubers, but the majority of popular English language youtubers that I’ve seen speak as fast as humanly possible, and even cut mili-seconds out of the videos every few words in post processing so that they can fit the most info into the shortest video. Most American’s don’t have the time or patience to watch a longer video. 5 minutes seems like an hour. Get on with it, or I change the channel!. Even her frequent pauses to banter with “Chris” could be construed as risky and could be costing her a few viewers here and there.

      I’m not necessarily arguing that it’s a good thing… but I suppose waxing poetic about the this generation having the attention span of a house fly is probably not on topic 😀

    • This is a generational thing. Being raised on videos composed of images flashed for two tenths of a second, the younger generations’ minds are trained to absorb and assimilate information faster than those of us raised in the pre-computerized era.

  3. Every single time I come up with some article about her in a venezuelan setting (blog. facebook, etc.), there is always the fact that she is Ricardo Hausman’s daughter. I guess CC is no exception.

    Why? She is good and talented by herself, regardless of her parents. I think it is a disservice to her to always make the association.

    • Look if John Maynard Keynes had had a really funny daughter, people would’ve noted it. Not dwelled on it, but noted it. Especially writing to an audience of hardcore Venezuelan economics nerds, not noting it would’ve been bizarre.

      • Hmmm, justifying your connection between Joanna and her Dad by equating Ricardo Hausmann with John Maynard Keynes? Reeeeally? What a stretch! What some people do to substantiate a concoction. Or, to put it in another light: how come you don’t use your father’s good name to promote yourself, Quico?

        Agree with Bruni. Joanna can stand on her own two feet. And I say this though JH’s style of comedy eludes me. It’s a generational thing.

        • Equating Hausmann to Keynes in accomplishments would be a stretch for sure. But since the comparison would be more honestly interpreted in notoriety, and the context is Venezuela, I’d wager a bet that more people in the Venezuelan sphere know Hausmann’s name than they do Keynes…..

          I for one appreciated the note. I knew Hausmann’s name. But, pendejo que soy, never made the connection until I googled it because of the note.

          I don’t think more or less of Joanna because of her lineage. I share some shared interests and talents with my own father, but also some very marked differences (thank God). Since we’re all supposed to be reasonably intelligent adults here, I prefer Quico give me the extra info about the connections, and trust me to handle it with intellectual honesty in my evaluations.

      • Syd and Bruni,

        FT is right on this one. Joanna Houseman’s connection with another famous Venezuelan is noteworthy. Your criticism of Francisco for including it is petty.

  4. This woman is hilarious as f#$^. And even better, she is describing in a few minutes to non venezualans what is going on. In plain words withouts any bs. CC in 5 minutes. Great!

  5. 90% of the media is controlled by the government. Hahahahaha……….yes Toro and Nagel you have finally reached the level that you have been striving for. Rock bpttom. I guess Johana is waiting for her Dad to get $60 billion fropm the IMF to sabe Venezuela so that she can have her cut. Thank God she libes abroad.

    • Sigh… One of the costs of freedom of speech is being forced to listen to a LOT of bullshit. Fortunately, one of the advantages is being able to call you out on your incoherent gibberish. Don’t ever change Arturo.

  6. I loved this rant and I’ve loved all of her prior ones. She’s very talented and I think she did an amazing job describing in a very funny way (if that’s possible) the situation in Venezuela. The one thing I didn’t like is the “moving $4.2 billion offshore” statement. Of course, billions have been stolen. Maybe it was more than $4.2 billion. However, throwing out numbers like that takes away credibility. That number is just gossip. There’s so much to say about chavistas that we don’t need to go down that road. Saying that chavistas all together have stolen $300 billions in 17 years would have been much better and credible. Other than that, great job!

  7. I hate to be “that guy”, but, seriously, after the “signs that you are a venezuelan living outside” video (Can’t remember the exact name) which I didn’t even watch until its end, I can’t bring myself to watch another of her videos, my opinion on the one I mentioned is, well, not good to say it in the most polite manner.

  8. I think this is a fun video, but come on she’s a comedian and let he do her thing. But those number are a joke. Please, don’t tell me that she should be part of any transitional anything of any kind, that she’s advising the oposition or anything like that. ENCHUFADOS, I think she’s Ricardo Hausman daughter.

    Fortinbras you nailed!


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