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Congratulations to Venezuela – Socialism In An Empty Country

It’s remarkable how attempts to build socialism seem to end up in an empty country, isn’t it? It’s almost as if the system is one that actual humans don’t like very much. Which couldn’t be possible in the slightest now, could it, given that the system is by and of the people for the people.

More than half of young Venezuelans want to move abroad permanently, after food shortages, violence and a political crisis escalated to new extremes in 2017, according to a new survey.

Once Latin America’s richest country, Venezuela’s economy is now collapsing and it is battling hyperinflation at levels unmatched anywhere else in the world. The IMF projects inflation will reach 13,000% this year and the economy will shrink 15%.

For Venezuelans between 15 and 29, the crisis has escalated to a point where they have lost confidence in their home, according to a poll carried out by the US firm Gallup and shared exclusively with the Guardian. Some 53% would like to move abroad permanently.

From which we might conclude that 47% are deluded, ignorant or think Maduro will keel over soon enough.

We do have good historical evidence about this too. Sure, Colombia isn’t the same as Venezuela, Ecuador isn’t and so on, “Latin American” countries are not all the same. Yet with the exception of Brazil they closely enough share a language. It is possible to move – assuming one is allowed across the border – with a certain ease in a cultural sense. Much as that movement across the GDR borders was possible. And much as 3.5 million people did move across that GDR border before the Berlin Wall was put up. Or some 20% of the population left the pleasures of socialism behind and went off to be oppressed by the capitalists before the rest were prevented from doing so.

As with the GDR then so with Venezuela now. Sure, socialism, of Bolivarian or Stalinist types, is said to be for the people. But from what people do when exposed to the joys of it, people don’t like it very much. And that is rather the point of having a system, isn’t it? Not that it accords to some theory or other, but that people like it. You know, we’re trying to promote human happiness and all that? A watchful eye on migration volumes and directions being a very useful guide to what people actually do prefer…..

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The Mole
The Mole
6 years ago

To be fair the question is quite extreme (move away permanently) I’d hazard a guess that much of the other 47% would like to move temporarily (but return to their home once things are sorted out) or would like to move away if it wasn’t for the fact they have family or other commitments that is preventing them.

Maritime Barbarian
Maritime Barbarian
6 years ago

“Voting with their feet.”
When Chavez was still alive the direction was already clear. It would be like Cuba, where people were so desperate they would try to flee by floating to Florida on inner tubes.
Except, of course, Venezuela has a very long land frontier; leaving will be far easier in the physical if not emotional sense.
Perhaps Ken Livingstone can stand on the border and try to turn them back to his ideal country.

Hector Drummond
6 years ago

Lies. The people leaving are just good-will ambassadors who want to tour the world spreading the good news about Venezuela’s socialist revolution.

So Much For Subtlety
So Much For Subtlety
6 years ago

Presumably half of them think Venezuelans are smart enough to learn not to do it again next time. So they will contemplate returning at some point.

The other half are smart enough to know better.

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