President Nicolás Maduro declared February 1st a holiday commemorating Ezequiel Zamora’s birthday. Zamora is perhaps the most over-glorified of Chavismo’s national heroes. And I’ve come to develop a theory about this sort of thing. It seems to me that the first quarter of the year is when the President dedicates himself to declaring absurd holidays to confuse and -regrettably- gratify the population. Zamora is just the figure of the day.

Also, Maduro announced the entering of Bs. 10.000 bills into circulation. Better extremely late than never? Thank God inflation stopped to wait for them. Oh wait…

Trumped News

Our domestic news have been relatively ignored, though, as attention has flocked to the United States this past week. President Trump (holy cow) has wreaked havoc by announcing a travel ban on citizens from Iran, Lybia, Syria, Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, and Sudan. As a result, protests have erupted in most major cities. I personally walked through one in Philadelphia, and honestly it looked a bit like an angry Comic-Con.

Malnutrition

In Venezuela, the lack of foods as a whole, combined with the fact that most price-accessible foods are high on fats and carbohydrates and low on nutrients, results in a generation that will probably wind up with large-scale diabetes problems

Dr. Maritza Landaeta, from the Venezuelan Observatory of Health, explained how malnutrition works and how the current food crisis in Venezuela is making it worse, reports El Estímulo. Malnutrition not necessarily means hunger, but lack of proper nutrients. In Venezuela, the lack of foods as a whole, combined with the fact that most price-accessible foods are high on fats and carbohydrates and low on nutrients, results in a generation that will probably wind up with large-scale diabetes problems. And that’s just for those who actually eat.

Conspiracy… theories?

MUD Secretary (for now) Chúo Torrealba said yesterday that the government is planning on having elections without the opposition. He claims that, like so many dictators before them, PSUV plans on having elections with a single ballot, making opposition parties illegal. The man’s probably right.

Pirates of the Carúpano

Sucre state is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever visited. Once you pass Cumaná, the road east is astonishing, filled with gorgeous beaches and towns like Carúpano, Río Caribe, and Mariguitar. Understandably, fishing is the backbone of this coastal economy (although tourism should be as well).

However, these past months, fishermen have taken an incredible hit from criminals at sea. Bands of pirates have been continually assailing the fishermen as they work, which has made it impossible for them to fish at night, and banned them almost completely from the high seas, forcing them to fish near the shore. As a result, many fishermen have defected the profession and instead taken to planting onions or yuca. A devastating blow to the economy and culture of Sucre.

Solutions need change

Lawmaker Miguel Pizarro told his counter, Héctor Rodríguez, that solutions for the Venezuelan situation require a change in government. Pizarro, a former student leader and -in this writer’s opinion- one of the good ones, made it clear to Rodríguez that there’s no talk of recovery without a change in government, which is (in case we’re forgetting) a Constitutional right that’s being violated.

A happy note with which to end: Forbes is releasing their “30 Under 30” list for Europe, which, alongside people like FC Barcelona striker Luis Suárez, includes Venezuelan bakery chef Andrea Dopico Caffareli, reports Efecto Cocuyo. A big congrats to Caffareli, and thank you from Venezuela.

 
Oh, and P.S. This weekend held the Harvard Model United Nations, and the Ivy League Model United Nations Conference, the two largest, most competitive MUN competitions for High School students anywhere in the world. Academia Merici and Colegio San Ignacio de Loyola excelled at Harvard, and Instituto Cumbres de Caracas was crowned Best International Delegation at the Ivy League, marking four victories in five years. Kudos Venezuela, and Semper Altius.

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