The Venezuelan experiment – proving what everyone already knew

The Venezuelan experience is an example endlessly repeated about how the politics of resentment, the natural home for the socialist ethos, leads to ruin for everyone within such communities, aside from its political leaders or their friends. And so Venezuela, which is an example in so many different ways, but here we are looking only at price control:

Two years before his death, Hugo Chavez tried to repeal the law of supply and demand. . . . Chavez despised the law because he believed it robbed the poor and unjustly profited producers. . . .

In its place, he persuaded the Venezuelan legislature to enact the 2011 Law on Fair Costs and Prices, a price-setting mechanism to ensure greater social justice. A newly created National Superintendency of Fair Costs and Prices was empowered to establish fair prices at both the wholesale and retail levels. More than 500,000 price edicts have been issued. Companies that violate these price controls are subject to fines, seizures and expropriation.

And the results. This is from The Guardian who may report but being good leftists probably don’t really understand what’s gone wrong:

“Battling food shortages, the Venezuelan government is rolling out a new ID system that is either a grocery loyalty card with extra muscle or the most dramatic step yet towards rationing in Venezuela, depending on who is describing it. . . .

Registration begins at more than 100 government-run supermarkets across the country on Tuesday and working-class shoppers – who sometimes endure hours-long queues at the stores to buy cut-price groceries – are welcoming the plan.

“The rich people have things all hoarded away, and they pull the strings,” said Juan Rodriguez, who waited two hours to enter the government-run Abastos Bicentenario supermarket near downtown Caracas on Monday, then waited three hours more to check out….

Patrons will register with their fingerprints, and the new ID card will be linked to a computer system that monitors purchases. The food minister, Félix Osorio, said it will sound an alarm when it detects suspicious purchasing patterns, barring people from buying the same goods every day.

Re The Guardian story, what is most revealing of all is its last para:

Defenders of Venezuela’s socialist government say price controls imposed by the late President Hugo Chávez help poor people lead more dignified lives, and the United Nations has recognised Venezuela’s success in eradicating hunger.

Do you think the idiot who wrote this story and ended it this way has learned a thing. He lives somewhere else but in spite of the evidence he has reported still thinks what Chavez did helped the poor. With morons like this around, the next Venezuela is just around the corner.

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