In which Venezuela Achieves a Dubious Milestone

Q: What do toilet paper and Venezuelan currency have in common? A: Absolutely nothing, as toilet paper is more valuable than is Venezuelan currency. No, seriously. And of course, toilet paper is hard to find in Venezuela. Thank goodness that the Venezuelan government is taking the responsible approach to this economic mess. Just kidding! It actually …

Things Are about to Get Even Worse in Venezuela

In its finite wisdom, the Maduro regime in Caracas--which has turned just about everything that it has touched to a disaster--has now decided to tackle the issue of food distribution: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has promised to nationalize food distribution in the South American nation beset with record shortages of basic goods, runaway inflation and …

Believe It Or Not, Things Are Actually Getting Worse in Venezuela

I continue to wonder why it is that those who celebrated Hugo Chavez back when he was insulting George W. Bush have nothing to say about his legacy now. Perhaps it is because of stories like this one, and what they have to say about the failures of chavismo: Venezuela says it will cut the …

Venezuelan Humor Has Turned Mordant, which Means that the Venezuelan Political Landscape Could Be Ripe for Change

Nicolás Maduro had better be worried. Jokes like this one have become popular: An Englishman and a Frenchman are at a museum, admiring a Renaissance work depicting Adam, Eve, and the apple in Eden. The Briton observes that Adam sharing the apple with his wife shows a particularly British propriety. The Frenchman, unconvinced, counters that the …

Speaking of Curbs on Freedom . . .

The onetime fans of the Hugo Chávez regime in Venezuela--the ones who thought that the regime was filled with wonderful people and ideas and who thought it was just marvelous that Chávez went to the United Nations to call George W. Bush "the devil"--have been rather quiet (as noted many times on this blog), now …

Marxist Economist Begins to Realize that Marxist Economics Does Not Work

You'd think that the lesson would have taken earlier: Venezuela's economic failings are turning it into the "laughing-stock" of Latin America, according to late president Hugo Chavez's top economic planner. Former Finance and Planning Minister Jorge Giordani, who was sacked in mid-2014 by Chavez's successor, Nicolas Maduro, said in an interview this week that reforms …

The Failure that Is the Venezuelan Economy

I still recall the days when many a pundit in the United States expressed at least mild admiration--and oftentimes, significant admiration--for Hugo Chávez's socialist project. Behold what it hath wrought: Shoppers thronged grocery stores across Caracas today as deepening shortages led the government to put Venezuela’s food distribution under military protection. Long lines, some stretching for …

Behold the Fruits of a Chavista Economy

Venezuela's economy has gone into recession. The gory details: In a statement, the bank said GDP contracted 4.8 percent in the first quarter, versus the same period of last year, then it fell a further 4.9 percent in the second quarter and shrank 2.3 percent in the third quarter. The statement added that 12-month inflation, …

A Modest Endorsement of the Venezuelan Regime

Behold. Of course, in a better world, we could spend less time parodying failed regimes and instead, spend our time implementing political and economic policies that actually do serve to alleviate immiseration and provide others with political freedoms. But the Venezuelan regime--and all those who enable its existence--is utterly uninterested in helping the people it supposedly …

Meanwhile, Tyranny Continues in Venezuela

I don't believe for a single moment that there was a plot afoot to kill Nicolás Maduro, but of course, the Venezuelan regime pretends conveniently that there was. This makes it easier for the government to suppress protest and dissent, and allows the government to try to distract Venezuelans from the existence of truly awful …