An Agitated Day

For Wednesday, August 22, 2018. Translated by Javier Liendo.

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Photo: USGS

This Tuesday at 5:30 p.m., an earthquake shook northern Venezuela, with the epicenter 5 km away to the east of Yaguaraparo (Sucre State) and a magnitude calculated with important differences (between 6.3 and 7.3).  Since Richter’s scale is logarithmic, the energy release gap between one magnitude and the other is enormous, but there were also differences in depth estimates (from 1 km to 123 kms): this government is ineffective to produce and report crucial data, but in a natural disaster this carries more weight.

Sucre experiences tremors with medium frequency and apparently this came closer to the intensity experienced in July 1997 with the Cariaco earthquake, one of the most devastating in our history. The earthquake was also felt in Colombia, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Grenada and Barbuda. According to Interior Minister Néstor Reverol, there were no victims and they’re assessing the damage, including in Caracas where the so-called Torre de David suffered a 25% inclination.

The opposition cosmos

In the National Assembly’s (AN) session, lawmakers unanimously approved the agreement supporting the TSJ in exile’s sentence against Nicolás for acts of corruption and money laundering related to Odebrecht, ratifying the vacancy of the post of President of the Republic, approved in January, 2017; ordering State security bodies to comply with Parliament’s agreements, adding that this is an “authoritarian regime that has sought to derogate the Constitution.”

Strangely, the fight between lawmakers Carlos Paparoni and Omar González before this agreement got more attention; as much as Omar Barboza’s response to the Luis Almagro’s controversial letter. The AN also approved an agreement rejecting the economic measures imposed by Nicolás, holding him responsible for the negative effect they’ll have on the purchasing power of Venezuelans. According to Andrés Velázquez, 60% of the country complied with the call to strike, deeming it a positive balance, taking the opportunity to develop his own criticism against Nicolás’s economic measures and promising new actions, asking the business sector to join in.

Without discussion, as usual

The ANC approved Nicolás’s economic measures package without a discussion: “Tomorrow’s already late. I ask that we approve these law you brought right now and then we get into the discussions,” said Diosdado Cabello to Economic Vice-President Tareck El Aissami, who took the list of decrees and announced that the wage subsidy will apply to the entire economically active population: “Informal sectors can also apply by registering for the carnet de la patria,” said El Aissami. With this bold possibility, supposedly nobody can justify price increases to “steal the salary of workers.” El Aissami said that business owners are responsible for attacking the economic policies and made a threat: “If we have to go after someone, we’ll go after Fedecámaras.”

Against Farmatodo

The National Bureau for the Defense of Socio-economic Rights (Sundde), opened an administrative procedure and ordered the pharmacy chain Farmatodo, amidst hyperinflation, to immediately roll prices back to those of July in all 170 stores across the country, claiming that the store chain committed the crimes of speculation and price retagging established in the Framework Law of Fair Prices: “Due to the aforementioned considerations, Sundee once again summoned the company for questioning and they must supply the verification documents and certain requirements regarding the previously described complaints.”

Infamous superintendent William Contreras cautioned that he won’t allow unjustified price increases, while he urged business and store owners to comply with regulations to avoid sanctions, isn’t he cute? Yesterday afternoon, the government took over the facilities of the company Smurfit Kappa in Valencia, Carabobo State, to “reactivate production,” adding an immediate price adjustment.

Protecting transparency

After 15 years of unyielding exchange controls and their considerable consequences, Finance Minister Simón Zerpa said that the new exchange agreement establishes, among other adjustments, the setting of an official exchange rate according to the average of foreign currency purchases and sales in weekly auctions: “So that everyone can bring their foreign currency, in a scheme with a single fluctuating rate, so the currency exchanged will come from the private sector. The government scraps currency allocations,” said Zerpa. They won’t restrict the offer but they will restrict the demand: legal persons will be able to request up to $400,000 per month and natural persons, up to $500; adding that the banking sector will be able to get foreign currency but not sell it, inspiring! ANC member Andrés Eloy Méndez explained that the “half a petro” of the minimum wage will fluctuate according to increasing currency prices, cuationing shop owners that if they increase prices, they’ll import the products “because it’s cheaper” (ask Saab.) He said that now the dollars will come from the private sector and the State will only protect the process’s transparency, hahaha! Minister Jorge Rodríguez announced that workers will be able to register individually in case their employer doesn’t send the payroll to the State: “We cross the data with social security, no problem,” he said, adding that food bonus hasn’t been scrapped. He mentioned the signing of an agreement between the agro-food sector and the government to establish the prices of 25 essential products, but he didn’t show them. Weird, eh?

Tensions and distensions

The Colombian Foreign Ministry expressed its protest for the alleged breach of its sovereignty by Venezuela, after two military helicopters flew through their airspace on August 19 in the Vetas de Oriente sector in Northern Santander. As a response to the arrival of American hospital ship (USNS Comfort) that, in Colombian waters, will assist health authorities in that country to attend the mass exodus of Venezuelans, a Chinese hospital ship will arrive to Venezuela, but to “beat down sabotage” instead. Colombia’s Foreign Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo said that his country won’t demand passports to Venezuelan migrants who want to enter the country and that they hope to regularize the situation of 442,462 Venezuelans registered in the Administrative Records of Venezuelan Migrants in Colombia (RAMV) to issue their Special Stay Permite (PEP) for two years.

In Venezuela, several states remain flooded, most of them with interrupted electricity and water supply services, a serious shortage of food and medicines and a healthcare crisis that increases our vulnerability before a natural tragedy even more. An earthquake is terrible news for a country experiencing a complex humanitarian crisis.

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72 COMMENTS

  1. The BCV website today quotes the Petro at $60.00, the same as yesterday. In contrast, the petro quotes in all other currencies fluctuated. It is looking more and more like the petro is tied to the dollar, not to the dollar and the Cesta Venezolana (which is around $65 dollars). The key is whether the Petro/Bolivar ratio will change to maintain that $60 dollar price per petro as the “unitary exchange rate” becomes operable.

  2. I’m in Switzerland right now but I just got a WhatsApp message from a family member in CCS saying they’re having another temblor.

  3. Nancy Pelosi: “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”
    Diosdado Cabello: “Tomorrow’s already late. I ask that we approve these law you brought right now and then we get into the discussions,”

  4. From what I’ve seen lately, Pelosi’s playbook is Chardonnay and anti-depressants. She’s one of the wealthiest people in the US congress, but probably Cabello’s stolen loot is far greater.

  5. I am curious – is there any example of a private company taken over by these Chavistas that actually continues to produce anything? Does that Kellogg’s plant that was “re-opened” actually make edible corn flakes and sugar pops and so on?

    I get that these old fucks on Aporrea believe that “the people” and “popular power” and blah blah can actually produce stuff, but have they ever?

    • Well, there’s the bright-red t-shirt slogan-stamping coop factory going strong, and occasionally a new “Ooh Aah” version electoral campaign commercial produced, and some cardboard boxes printed with CLAP, and, let me think….

    • Aloha, Tom. We are on far northwest shore of Kauai island, and the storm is still 48 hours away, according to their latest guesstimate. May hit Big island/Maui/Oahu in the meantime. For now, prediction for Kauai is that the storm should power down from its current 5 to a 2 or a 1 or a “tropical storm”, but still going to be plenty windy and lots of rain. But, you never know. Iniki was “supposed” to hit Oahu, but made a last minute turn and came full bore on Kauai. Trashed the island.

      In fact, we are going Venezuela style later today, since our local government decided to turn off our water out here because too much rain floods the pumps etc. (we have a direct cistern collection system in the mountains right next to us. Makes for great water pressure), even though still 48 hours before the storm projected to arrive. Is that efficiency, or what?!! They are leaving the power on until the storm eventually knocks it out. So we still have internet for now. We need to fill up the rubber maid bins for toilet flushing water. But not completely Venezuela style, since we have a 24 roll pack of TP from the Costco.

      There are lines at the local gas stations to fill up containers for generators (at $4.10 a gallon!)

      For now, enjoying my morning coffee with a calm, beautiful (dry) sunrise, and hoping that Zephyr is well funded.

      • AG, sounds like you are on top of it! I hope the worst of the storm misses Kauai. Keep us posted if possible. Good luck!

  6. Since the freaking Drones failed, why don’t they try a massive subterranean explosive, blaming the blast on tectonic plates and a pissed-off, anti-chavista Mother Nature?

    Our highly educated, incorruptible pueblo-people would probably buy that, for the most part.

  7. Now that we know it isn’t socialism that’s to blame I guess we could Blame
    It On The Bossa Nova.

    Francisco Toro’s item in
    Washington People’s Daily (Post): No, Venezuela doesn’t prove anything about socialism

        • Thanks, Dale. Unfortunately (?) for me, is pay-walled, and I am allergic to donating to Jeff Bezos. My loss!

          • OK, boys and girls. I do not like to give up my secrets, but you are all just so endearing.

            As you know many sites are paywalled, and when they are they use various ways to restrict your viewing. Here are 2 examples around this. (I use a mac, with safari)
            New York Times (Gives you 3? Free articles per month). After, Simply CLEAR your history (Menu, History, Clear History, All). You are back in Business for 3? more articles.

            Washington Post (Clearing History – Did not work, but clearing the cookies did), Go- Menu, Safari, Preferences, Privacy, Manage Website Data, Find/Select washingtonpost.com, then Remove), once again gives you the current Free offering

            Note some sites, log your IP, so only way around is to use a different device, vpn, which is not exactly worth the effort.

          • Dale,
            But the cookies actually come in handy for me for a number of other sites, such as logging into a bank account, and NYT – WAPO are not “Cookie Deleting Worthy” to paraphrase Seinfeld. VPN is not a bad idea, though. I am told this is also a way to watch blacked out sporting events.

          • I am PC challenged, for 34 years mac only.
            But it I have no issues.
            All Password’s are NOT affected (On mac they are stored in the keychain), and neither my bookmarks to all my goto sites.

            Only issue I have now are sites with 2-step verification, which needs to be entered if I clear history.

          • as for any sport you want to watch – That you are desparate to watch, and can not, or do not want to spend money. And are willing to put yourself though up to 5 minutes of pop-up hell, and a low res stream

            Go to firstrows.com, or firstrowsports.tv or firstrowsports.eu (or a variation).

            Been using for 5 years, and I have not once, NOT been able to find my game.

            You WILL BE FRUSTRATED, but learn what to click, what not to click, and accept there will be warnings, pop ups and a ton of shit. But I can now see any game, any time, in under 2 minutes. (But I have paid my dues to learn)

            Again, if you gotta see the game. It is free for the viewing.

          • Another security weakness for many pay-walled sites:
            1) Right click on the link.
            2) Select “Save link as …”
            3) Save file someplace in your PC as a .htm file
            4) Navigate on you file manager to the location of the saved file and open it. It will automatically open in your default browser. You will lose some formatting features but the text will be there for you to read.

            Needless to say: The information above is offered only for the purpose of communicating known weaknesses of some pay-walled sites. I do not condone circumventing website features meant to ensure that legitimate owners of intellectual property receive a fair reward for their work.

          • Some people (not me, of course) might go to Reddit, where apparently some folks will provide links to live stream NHL, including HD. Not that I would click the links, but we don’t have TV, so if I did want to watch me some NHL, I might be tempted.

      • As usual Francisco Toro in Washington talks his utter bullshit. I would love to meet that bloke in person.
        But strangely enough he doesnt walk around the streets i live in.
        “Utter cunt”, as the english saying would go.
        And all these little socialists in the states love his shit.
        He does not speak for the Venezuelan people i live with, in Venezuela, and thats a fact.
        Like i said he is an “utter cunt”. First amendment and all that!

    • Nothing really shocking there. We’ve known for a long while that Quico embraces socialism, it just hasn’t been done correctly.

        • Hey cuck, Already back from protesting against white farmers in South Africa? You must have done some good. They are taking their farms and threatening to cut the throats of any remaining white farmers. Attaboy C.

          • LIVE
            South Africa officially takes the first steps towards something very bad
            AUGUST 22, 2018
            WIKUS DE WET/AFP/GETTY IMAGES
            GLENN BECK
            CEO/FOUNDER

            Free housing, free college tuition, single payer healthcare, doubling the welfare state AND the minimum wage… does this sound familiar? It’s the same platform of any Democratic Socialist candidate here in the United States. Whether it’s Bernie Sanders, Ocasio Cortez… and a whole fleet of up and coming rising stars.

            RELATED: South Africa is starting to mirror the rise of past totalitarian regimes

            But this platform, as familiar as it may sound, is the same platform as the Economic Freedom Fighters (or EFF) in South Africa. A group of Marxist-Leninists who have now become the third largest political party in the country. Their leader, Julius Malema, has brought the EFF into the spotlight by tapping into populism. He fingered the white man as the answer to all their problems, declaring at a rally back in January:

            Go After A White Man… We Are Cutting The Throat Of Whiteness!
            The EFF’s numbers and popularity have grown so large that they were able to force the African National Congress to begin seizing land owned by white farmers and redistributing it to black South Africans. That policy has already begun. The new law states that white farmers will be offered market value for their land by the government. If they turn it down, the land will be seized anyway. Recently, a white family was shocked to find out that the government was only offering a TENTH of what their farm was worth. It was obviously a slap in the face. After turning it down, they received this letter:

            Notice is hereby given that a terrain inspection will be held on the farms at 10am in order to conduct an audit of the assets and a handover of the farm’s keys to the state.
            This farm is just the first of many. A report earlier this month showed that 139 white owned farms have been targeted for seizure. What happens if farmers refuse to leave their land? These are the moments right before catastrophe, and it all began with a small group of Marxists that were able to capture the national spotlight by harnessing hatred.

            We don’t have land redistribution here… yet.
            We don’t have land redistribution here… yet. But the rise of Marxism in South Africa should sound uncomfortably familiar. Look at what the new left is doing and saying. They’re categorizing each of us into groups and identities and turning us against one another. Social class against social class, race against race, gender against gender… today’s “social justice” is the undercover name for yesterday’s “bourgeoisie/proletariat workers revolution.” It’s Marxism coming from the flank rather than straight ahead.

            You’ll never hear this from a Democratic Socialist, but heed this warning. Marxism leads to violence EVERY TIME. Pray for the people of South Africa, but also pray that we don’t fall as far off the cliff as they did.

        • “All Venezuela demonstrates is that if you leave implementation to the very worst, most anti-intellectual, callous, authoritarian and criminal people in society, socialism can have genuinely horrendous consequences.”

          I rest my case cucklehead.

          • But you left out the sentence after the one you quote: “But couldn’t the same be said of every ideology?”

            That sentence’s point is, and it is 100% valid, that capitalism in the hand’s of thugs is also a disaster, and if you need proof look at Venezuela’s 4th Republic. I lived it. Yes, this is much worse, but it is just the natural consequence of what was built in 40+ years of corruption and complacency.

          • capitalism in the hand’s of thugs is also a disaster, and if you need proof look at Venezuela’s 4th Republic.
            Fourth republic capitalism?
            Oil nationalized in 1976: Socialism.
            Government-owned companies producing iron, steel aluminum. Sembrar el petroleo, and all that: Socialism.

            Government-owned electricity-generating companies: Socialism

            Plenty of opportunity for corrupt politicians to stick their hands in the government-owned trough.

            In addition, “land reform” didn’t begin with El Finado. IIRC, Carlos Machado Allison said that government is the biggest landowner in Venezuela: Socialism.

            Move in the opposite direction: In the 1990s, telecom was privatized. All over Latin America- not just Venezuela- privatized telecom performed much better than their government-owned predecessors.

            In sum, the Fourth Republic wasn’t all that capitalist.

            The petrostate that was and the petrostate that is: AD versus Chavista models.

          • “But you left out the sentence after the one you quote: “But couldn’t the same be said of every ideology?””

            BT shot major holes in your assertion that the Fourth Republic was capitalist. And let me say here, I understand what you’re trying to say. But as I’ve said dozens of times here, today, Venezuela’s “far right” would be considered left-of-center in the US.

            Now, back on subject. I’m honestly interested in some examples of capitalism in the hands of thugs who are running a government. Examples please. There have to be some out there.

            Maybe BT has some?

          • What always puzzles me as socialists raise hell about the evil’s of capitalism, especially socialists here, is that as I look at a capitalist country like the US, and I’ve traveled extensively all over the country, it appears to me that even the poorest in American still possess far more than the poorest in most socialist countries.

            I grew up in small town south Louisiana. Grew up in a town that was probably 25% black. Grew up in a town where the bus station had a whites-only dining area and the local equivalent of DQ had white and black drinking fountains and white and black serviing stations. I remeber this clearly.

            While I can’t say I was involved directly in the black community, I visited their neighborhoods frequently as my father employed a number of blacks. From what I recall, most owned their own homes, had one or two cars, and ate what most of the rest of us ate. To be sure, their standard of living was not equal to ours, but with both of my parents working as professionals, our standard of living was probably well above average.

            The last time I visited home, after having seen the shelves emptying here, I intentionally walked into a number of shops that were situated in mostly black neighborhoods. No surprises. The shelves were full, black patrons were buying what they needed, and at one spot, I picked up some of the best boudin I think I’ve ever eaten. LOL

            Anyway, off my soap box.

          • Well I’ll be damned. Even Quico has his moments:

            Maybe the original text was a bit too academic, maybe couching it in those terms invites misunderstanding. So let me ponértela facilita: no we do not obviously all agree. Yes there is an alternative to “sembrar el petróleo”. A radical, weird alternative we’ve never ever tried before.

            Capitalism.

            Just letting markets do their thing.

            Because Sembrar el Petróleo isn’t just a motherhood-and-apple pie call to invest oil rents wisely. Sembrar el Petróleo is a lot more specific than that. It’s a call to redirect oil rents out of the industry that produced them, which happens to also be by far the nation’s most profitable sector.

            The alternative is not that mysterious: letting capital chase its most profitable use. If we did that, what we would see is a much greater share of capital flowing into the industry where all the money is in Venezuela —oil and gas— and much less money going into the likes of the Tinaco-Anaco railway, or state-owned steel mills that don’t produce any steel, or roach-infested Venetur hotels, or gallineros verticales, or any of of hundreds of other oil-sowing boondoggles and scams our governments have latched onto over the decades as vehicles for frittering away our oil rents.

            Trying to pick winners out of an office in Carmelitas isn’t the way you turn oil wealth turns into development. It never was. You’d think we’d have learned that by now. We haven’t. We still don’t get it that if you allow markets to allocate capital you end up with more capital, and a bigger tax base, and that bigger tax base can then be used to provide the kinds of public services at which markets are no good but democratic states are great.

            https://www.caracaschronicles.com/2016/06/22/sowing-the-dirigisme/

          • Boludo has valid points about the nationalization of the oil industry, about mining industries and power plants being in the hands of the government, about land reform, etc. And same with the comments on the foolishness of micro-managing the economy out of some office in Carmelitas, in the article quoted by MRubio. What rational mind could argue against those points? It is true that Venezuela’s version of capitalism was “sui generis”, to say the least, but Venezuela’s fourth republic was constantly paraded as an example of what a successful Latin American society should look like. Even today you constantly see reports in the press about how chavizmo destroyed a perfectly wonderful country. Few people are willing to admit that that “wonderful” country had a rotten core.
            Criticism of the Venezuelan flavor of capitalism can be filed into the “they didn’t do capitalism right” folder, just like apologies for socialism are filed into the “Chavez didn’t do socialism right” folder. I don’t remember Adam Smith saying anything about nationalizing basic industries, just like I don’t remember Karl Marx saying anything about having “cupos de dolares” so that middle class families could vacation in Miami. And, no, I am not defending exchange controls, just pointing out the internal inconsistencies of both Venezuelan capitalism and Venezuelan socialism.
            In regards to examples of “Thug Capitalism”, will Pinochet do? Yes, I know he is the patron saint of many CC readers, and I know all about the economic miracle in Chile. But 99.44% of the violence of the regime was gratuitous. I just pulled that number from my Ivory soap box; maybe you will disagree and tell me that only 44.99% of the violence was gratuitous. I won’t argue that. The point is, was it really necessary to do what they did to Victor Jara and to many others? I am a Capitalist and a Catholic. I am willing to admit that Pinochet gives capitalism a bad name, just as much as I am willing to say that pedophile priests make a mockery out of faith. Please don’t make the mistake of thinking that criticism of some versions or some aspects of capitalism means that the person doing the criticism is a communist.

          • “And, no, I am not defending exchange controls, just pointing out the internal inconsistencies of both Venezuelan capitalism and Venezuelan socialism.”

            Hmmm, anyone else sensing a common thread there?

            Fatima, seriously, I don’t disagree with you, or Quico, or anyone else who wants to argue that Venezuela is now run by a corrupt cabal of thieving narcos who have driven the country into the ground, dragging socialism’s good name along with it.

            I would argue though that the historical evidence tends to indicate that when capitalism and socialism are pitted against one another, the average guy on the street ultimately tends to live a better life and have greater chances of upward mobility under capitalism. There’s something inherent, I believe, in most of us, that makes us drive ourselves to succeed and work harder when we’re allowed to keep the majority of what we ourselves have produced.

      • Quico does have his limits. Consider the obituary he wrote on Fidel Castro. The Worst Latin American.
        Has any other Latin American done as much damage in a single lifetime as Fidel Castro? It’s…not even close

        At the same time, Quico chooses to ignore Bernie Sanders’s worshiping of Latin American despots like Castro. You know, the Bernie who told us that the American dream could be better realized in Chavista Venezuela than in the United States. Or Bernie’s telling us that food lines are a good thing. I doubt that Quico thinks that food lines in Venezuela are a good thing.

        So yes, Quico leans somewhat left- though well short of Fidel.

        One thing that Quico doesn’t point out is that as Socialism is predicated on increasing government control, when a megalomaniac like El Finado keeps accruing more and more power, the Socialist ideology offers little resistance. Socialism offers little institutional resistance to the power hungry. After all, government is for the people, and more government power means more power to the people. And power to the people is a good thing. 🙂

        Quico in WaPo:
        American conservatives won’t acknowledge the rest of South America, because doing so would mean acknowledging that Venezuela-style collapses are the opposite of typical.

        The track record of socialism in Latin America is not good. Sandinsta Nicaragua: 40% decline in per capita agricultural production in peacetime 1980 compared to war-torn 1979- they took over on July 19,1979. Juan Domingo and all those nationalizations. Say no more. Velasco and military socialism in Peru- disaster.

        Allende was trending to a Chavezuela style collapse- hyperinflation and 18% reduction in per capita Agricultural production in three years of governing – probably would have gotten to the complete collapse of Chavezuela had he continued in power several more years. Perhaps I shouldn’t have mentioned Allende, because I don’t want Canucklehead to have a hissy fit. 🙂

        While Humala’s performance in office was good, that was due more not to his lefty ideology but to maintaining the policies of his “right-wing” predecessor. BTW, his “right-wing” predecessor had a better performance than Humala in both economic growth and in reducing poverty. But don’t tell Quico that. 🙂

        Yes, Venezuela is the worst case scenario. But there are plenty of other poor examples.

        Considering the scorn that Quico heaps on those who point out Bernie Sanders’s love of Latin American despots, it would appear that Quico prefers that American conservatives not pay attention to anything.

    • Just read it.

      By Quico’s reasoning, since many drunk drivers make it home without killing someone, the old lady that got run down in the crosswalk last night doesn’t prove a thing.

  8. Local chavista sends my woman a text this morning. Do you have sugar and at what price? My woman answers, yes, at 40 bs to the kilo. Chavista writes back, but Maduro just announced that the offical price is 35 bs to the kilo. My woman replies, buy all the sugar you can at the best price you can find, and sell it to me at 35, I’m a buyer all day at that price.

    Chrickets.

    • MRubio – is he trying to set you guys up for another visit by those guys with guns? The old farts on Aporrea are all puffed up about the war on evil speculating merchants now that they’ve got their new price list.

      • He’s a she, lives a block away, and we once employed her hubby. She’s in charge of receiving and distributing the gas canisters for this section of town. A service for which she most surely compensated by the reds.

        Since the owners of her house are threatening to toss her out because they want to take possession again, and because her kid has breathing problems, she can no longer receive the gas canisters at her place. We gave her permission to use our ample and secure garage for the service of distributing gas to the community.

        She won’t be giving us any shit about sugar prices. LOL

        • “Since the owners of her house are threatening to toss her out because they want to take possession again,”

          I assume tossing her out requires a “legal proceeding” that involves a payment of money to multiple people. The only question is whether cheaper to pay her to leave, or cheaper to pay the “authorities” to make her leave.

          Do I have that right?

        • The sugar reminds me of the old story about a woman trying to buy potatoes from a street vendor in a war torn European city at the end of WWII. She approached a vendor and asked how much for potatoes? 10 cents per pound says the vendor. But the vendor on the other side of the road sells them for 8 cents a pound says the woman. Then you should go buy them from him says the vendor. I can’t, he is out of potatoes said the woman. The vendor replies….yes, when I am out of potatoes I can sell them for 8 cents also.

  9. Here are the first 25 “Agreed Prices”

    https://www.aporrea.org/economia/n330179.html

    The table includes the prices in petros for those who prefer to pay in that currency.

    The table does not include weights/measures, but apparently these are understood by the shopping population(?) Some are mentioned in the article.

    Let the shortages begin!

  10. Socialism can mean a lot of different things. I don’t know what flavor of socialism suits Quico but it must be democratic at least. It is hard to imagine there is any form of socialism that hasn”t been tried since Marx and Engals took pen to paper. It seems to attract three types of people, rich folks who adopt it after they have made their money and young idealists who know nothing about money and finally adults who resent the success of others. Jealousy is a big factor but is always camoflaged by an expressed love for social justice. At its base it is always about taking money from A to give to B with C, the middleman in the transaction ending up both rich and powerful.

    • Bill C. “At its base it is always about taking money from A to give to B with C, the middleman in the transaction ending up … rich …” – This is also the business plan of most lawyers.

      I thought a fundamental aspect of “real” socialism is that ALL (or most all) means of production and distribution are owned/controlled by the state “on behalf of the people” and that individuals are subservient to the collective. Maybe not to the “private property is theft” level, but certainly appropriation of private property without compensation is baked in.

      But, I have a Venezuelan woman that works with me who recently told me she thinks Denmark is socialist (as an example of “good” socialism). She hates Chavez and Maduro, but thinks we all should be entitled to free healthcare (and good healthcare, not Cuban style).

      This Occasional-Cortex woman that the press is all excited about is called a socialist, but from what little I can tell, this means lots of free stuff (college, healthcare, housing, income, iPhones, etc.) paid for by “taxing the rich” because Krugman says so.

    • Did they really pick SOB as the symbol for the new currency?

      I was thinking that they should stop using the name of Bolivar and they should have called it the Maduro, but SOB amounts to the same thing.

  11. This is reply to MRubio, re name badly run capitalist country. The answer you would get from Chuck Schumer et al is: “The United States”. We’ve never been great. Just a white supremacist Male patriarch slave owning shitlords. Cnuckler can fill in the details.

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