In an attempt to keep the socialist government alive and well, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered his officials to seize several factories to make sure that “productivity” continues.
“A stopped factory (is) a factory turned over to the people, the moment to do it has come, I’m ready to do it to radicalize the Revolution,” said Maduro this Saturday.
Specifically, one factory was swept by police for hoarding toilet paper. The owners of another company, The Polar Group, are facing criminal charges for stopping the production of beer on April 30 due to the country’s lack of importing barley.
Maduro declare that the country was in a state of emergency. “We must take all measures to recover productive capacity, which is being paralyzed by the bourgeoisie,” said Maduro. “Anyone who wants to halt (production) to sabotage the country should get out, and those who do must be handcuffed and sent to the PGV (Venezuelan General Penitentiary).”
However, his socialist policies are the reason why these companies are being forced to turn to the black market or to close down all together. In order to survive, many are relying on illegally imported goods from Colombia.
In the last two years, 70% of the population is in poverty due to the triple-digit inflation, the crime and mortality rates are the highest they have ever been, the lines are grocery stores are hours long and both babies and elderly are dying because of the lack of inexpensive medicines.
This crisis all started when the late president Hugo Chavez introduced socialism to Venezuela, he vowed to distribute the wealth amongst the poor. Maduro followed in his footsteps and continued to promote these policies as chaos ensued. Prices for goods, specifically oil were set well below production costs. Products are not even being made or purchased, leaving shelves at grocery stores empty.
These have caused the smuggling market to sky rocket, Venezuelan smugglers are taking goods from the country and selling them for higher prices in Colombia. With the exchange rate, it’s still cheap for Colombians. This illegal border trade is worth about $5 billion a year, according to Bloomberg.
Venezuelan smugglers are taking the cheap gas, with prices that have been mandated by Maduro’s government and are selling millions of gallons in Colombia.
The poor state of Venezuela has influenced protests to remove Maduro from office.
“In a bleak assessment of Venezuela’s worsening crisis, the senior officials expressed doubt that unpopular leftist President Nicolas Maduro would allow a recall referendum this year, despite opposition-led protests demanding a vote to decide whether he stays in office…” reports Reuters.
Maduro takes no blame for the dire state of his country. Instead, he faults the US. Maduro stated on Friday that the plan to replace his government was “activated in Washington, requested and pushed by elements of the fascist Venezuelan right, emboldened by the coup d’etat in Brazil.”
Unfortunately, Maduro is likely to serve the rest of his two-year term, even if a referendum succeeds. The socialists continue to block any attempts of reform.
Venezuela’s crisis has proven that socialism, along with many other historic catastrophes due to this economic and social system, continues to fail time and time again.
Editor’s Note: Venezuela should be one of the richest countries in Latin America, its oil production has brought in huge wealth. The socialist poliicies have stifled free enterprise and prevented Venezuela from building a productive infrastructure. Now the money is slowing down due to low oil prices, and Venezuela is helpless.