July 22, 2016

VENEZUELANS FLEE THEIR SOCIALIST ECONOMIC WRECK: This article focuses on refugees entering Colombia. The situation is tragic and is going to get worse. I am bothered by missing information in this otherwise factual AFP report. Yes, declining oil revenues did unleash “deep recession, chronic shortages and hyperinflation.” The troubles do threaten “17 years of socialist rule” under Nicholas Maduro and Hugo Chavez. But their socialist dictatorship and economic ignorance created the systemic economic and political conditions where a price decline could wreak havoc. A few days ago Bloomberg ran an article which depicts the hell Venezuelans are fleeing. The diarist records her family’s hunt for food and necessities in Caracas. The big score occurs on June 17 — a five kilo can of corn flour.

RELATED: Tim Worstall has worthwhile thoughts in a Forbes magazine opinion piece. A commenter says “imperialist tampering” caused Venezeula’s woes. In a detailed reply Worstall dismisses that nonsense. Worstall doesn’t blame socialism per se for the mess, but fingers Chavista stupidities, such as “idiot interventions into the price system.” Read the whole thing.

MORE: This long StrategyPage update backgrounds Colombia’s current political situation then moves to a detailed discussion of the Venezuelan government’s decision to put the army in charge of the country’s food supply.

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