Hugo Chavez, RIP

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RDP

Nonsense!  Ask an American, even a poor American, whether they want to emigrate to Venezuela (or Cuba).  Ask a Venezuelan (or Cuban) whether they want to emigrate to American.  Socialists never understand that the truely poor want to escape absolute poverty and don't give a rat's hindquaters about relative poverty.  After 50 years of destroying the economy and lives in Cuba, Cubans understand that America's poor enjoy a much higher standard of life than they do.  People vote with their feet.  Show me the flood of immigrants leaving Capitalistic countries for Socialistic countries.  I can show a never ending stream going the other way.  Lefties never ask why this is because they are afraid of the answer.

RDP

Nonsense!  Ask an American, even a poor American, whether they want to emigrate to Venezuela (or Cuba).  Ask a Venezuelan (or Cuban) whether they want to emigrate to American.  Socialists never understand that the truely poor want to escape absolute poverty and don't give a rat's hindquaters about relative poverty.  After 50 years of destroying the economy and lives in Cuba, Cubans understand that America's poor enjoy a much higher standard of life than they do.  People vote with their feet.  Show me the flood of immigrants leaving Capitalistic countries for Socialistic countries.  I can show a never ending stream going the other way.  Lefties never ask why this is because they are afraid of the answer.

RDP

venezuela is quickly becoming the murder capital of the world...Why is this so?

NDPP

Must be all the damn socialism RDP!

RDP

No, it is the results of socialism.  When you have nothing and no prospects of getting anything you want out.

Unionist

RDP wrote:

venezuela is quickly becoming the murder capital of the world...Why is this so?

I believe that was an IOC decision. Why... are you fuming because your cave didn't win?

 

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

In your example, they took the 15% out of the country, reducing the money available for the rest of the economy. That money in turn is added to pools of 'dark money' which are now wreaking havoc on international markets and pushing forward the austerity agenda. In addition, this money is comingled with organized crime, offical corruption, and stock fraud proceeds offshore. By allowing offshore accounts, we are encouraging tax evasion and opening up our society to criminal elements.

As money cycles between 20 and 40 times a year through the economy, removing 15% to the offshore accounts removes 300% to 600% of potential benefit of gross sales in the following year.

The only reason to have offshore accounts is to allow rich people to evade paying taxes. To advocate this is in my opinion against basic progressive principles. Maybe you could sell your right wing ideas to Ted Cruz or Donald Trump or someone a little more your speed.

RDP

Profit is either given to the shareholders in a form of a dividend or reinvested back into the company or a combination of both.  What exactly are you talking about black pools.  Don't forget that the largest shareholders tend to be pension plans with millions of investors.  When the president of a union goes to the money manager, the first question the president asks is what rate of return did you get on my union members money.

RDP

And, i should add, rightfully so.

Slumberjack

RDP wrote:
Don't forget that the largest shareholders tend to be pension plans with millions of investors.

The ramificatons of that seems to elude people when they talk about workers as a class in opposition to a Capitalist ownership class.  Unionized workers with pension plan investments are also part owners of production.  Some have recognized this paradox and now talk favourably of a precariat coming into its own someday, with the proper guidance of course.

Slumberjack

Capitalism is humanity's greatest failure.  Capitalism isn't merely an alternate ideology to socialism where one might pick and choose, but a predatory one that brooks no competing ideology.  Competing ideologies stand in the way of more profit, but since Capitalism has managed to produce the greatest armouries and networks of subversion and surveillance, largely at the expense of the general public and in favour of corporate owners, it constantly seeks to undermine and overwhelm social ideas, even those that operate domestically such as post offices, health care systems, etc.  Soon enough, it will become commonplace for municipal services of all types to be auctioned off to the private sector to make more money out of it.  This is alreay in full swing everywhere.  The public isn't supposed to own anything.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
In your example, they took the 15% out of the country, reducing the money available for the rest of the economy.

Venezuela has an easy fix for this:  print more money.

RDP

I notice you live in Canada.  Where would you rather live?  Cuba, the old Soviet Union, China, North Korea or any of the capitalistic (and democratic ((not military junta's or dictatorships as these are not capitalistice)).  I choose a free society (free society = capitalistic economy and a true democracy).  I would hope you realize that life in the capitalistic nations is better than life in a socialistic nation.  It might not be as good as your imagined utopia but it is better than socialism.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

A country with socialist tendencies might not be so bad.  One of the Nordic countries, maybe?  They're the ones that Canadian progressives tend to point to when they say that socialism works.

But no PURE, TRUE socialist country has succeeded.  Partly because pure socialism seems to require an enormous amount of social control to ensure the revolutionary fervor of the People and that never works.  And partly because as soon as any socialist country is on the ropes, the armchair vanguard denounces them as "not PURE, TRUE socialism!!".

Pure socialism is like the vegan of politics.  Maybe it's a good enough thing in and of itself, but it quickly devolves into purity tests, denouncements and propaganda, and eventually most people seem to lose interest in keeping it up.

Nothing wrong with eating way less meat, and more fresh vegetables though.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Just because you don't know about the hedge funds and the dark pools of literally trillions of dollars of tax evasion and criminal money doesn't mean they don't exist. Somehow you want us to believe this is not a crooked system when it is completely crooked, from the Canadian monarchy down to the lawyer on Bay St. defrauding investors on a mining deal.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Just because you don't know about the hedge funds and the dark pools of literally trillions of dollars of tax evasion and criminal money doesn't mean they don't exist.

Nothing I've read about dark pool trading suggests that they allow traders to avoid taxes, nor that they're criminal.

Can you share some plausible links that might flesh out the tax evasion part or the criminality part?

And what do dark pools have to do with the fact that Nicolas Maduro is stubbornly driving with a flat tire?  And speeding up every time the noise from it gets worse, in the hope of outrunning it?

6079_Smith_W

RDP wrote:

If a company (foreign company for the sake of this argument) has a 15% profit margin (a healthy profit margin) and they take all their profit out of the host country the remaining 85% largely stays in the host country.  Most of the 85% is wages and salaries and local expenses.

That's not necessarily true at all, and varies widely from sector to sector. There aren't too many companies - especially international ones - that don't also have offshore expenses so no, 15 percent profit does not mean 85 percent back into the economy. And if you are a large company  there are all kinds of ways of gaming expenses to minimize profit and taxes.

And the total amount of wages has nothing to do with whether those wages and working conditions are at all fair.

Then of course there is royalty rates. Businesses will spend a fair bit of money on paper (and on sport stadiums and other window dressing) if it means they can rip off a country's resources for virtually nothing. And who pays the cost for cleaning up the mess afterward?

The line that countries and people should be happy for the money that trickles down from business is the oldest lie in the book. It is one small and very skewed part of a much bigger balance sheet.

6079_Smith_W

As for pure socialism, of course no such thing exists except in theory and polemic, but I'm certainly happier here than I think I'd be in one of the states where anarcho-capitalism is dominant.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Is this even a problem for Venezuela?  Foreign businesses sneaking lucrative Bolivars out in the linings of their suitcases?

Last I heard, most foreign interests in Venezuela have either pulled out and written off, or are in palliative-care mode.

6079_Smith_W

Dunno, Magoo. I am just doing a bit of a reality check on the fairy tale.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

If we're talking about Venezuela, you'll need to be more specific.

Personally, my favourite is the fairy tale where ALL of Venezuela's problems are because of U.S. funded coup attempts.  That one always puts me to sleep.

6079_Smith_W

Mr. Magoo wrote:

If we're talking about Venezuela, you'll need to be more specific.

More specific than the quote I referenced?

The gist of RDP's comment is that everything left over after 15% profit is bounty that flows back to the people, so they should be thankful for it, and are better off with that business than without it.

His fairy tale, not mine. And if you are concerned about people drifting off topic, or its relevance to the real world you should probably take it up with him.

 

 

RDP

"

That's not necessarily true at all, and varies widely from sector to sector. There aren't too many companies - especially international ones - that don't also have offshore expenses so no, 15 percent profit does not mean 85 percent back into the economy. And if you are a large company  there are all kinds of ways of gaming expenses to minimize profit and taxes.

And the total amount of wages has nothing to do with whether those wages and working conditions are at all fair.

Then of course there is royalty rates. Businesses will spend a fair bit of money on paper (and on sport stadiums and other window dressing) if it means they can rip off a country's resources for virtually nothing. And who pays the cost for cleaning up the mess afterward?

The line that countries and people should be happy for the money that trickles down from business is the oldest lie in the book. It is one small and very skewed part of a much bigger balance sheet."

Look at any income statement for any company.  The largest expense by far is salary.   If you open a business in Venezuela (likely impossible now to keep the greedy capitalists out) your salary expenses will for the most part be incurred in Venezuela.  Does this not make sense to you?

Fair?  Who gets to define what is fair?  Is there agreement on fair?  Let’s leave the negotiation of wages and working conditions between the employee and employer.  These are the two parties that have to come to agreement on fair.  Both have the option to walk away if they believe the agreement isn’t fair.  That being said, the largest bargaining chip the employee has is a low unemployment rate.  The lower the unemployment rate, the more power the employee has.  Sorry, supply and demand and no law can change this. 

If royalty rates are too low then this is an issue between the government and the people.  If Chavez and Madero charged rates that were too low the people should revolt.  But, why would they charge rates that were too low?  I suspect that they charged rates that were slightly below the level that would prevent companies from determining that royalty rates were too high to make the project profitable.

What does Business will spend a fair bit of money on paper mean?  Again, why would any country give away their resources “for virtually nothing”?

Slumberjack

RDP wrote:
I notice you live in Canada.  Where would you rather live? 

It's a subjective question, and so it all depends.  If I were suffering from some type of life threatening malady with no way to pay for a doctor, maybe Cuba wouldn't seem like such a bad place after all.  You know what they say...'if you don't have your health you have nothing.'  If I was a destitute American needing food stamps to feed my family, and come to find that the politicans have once again trimmed down what I can get, and as a result my kids risk getting thinner, maybe some other nation's monthly ration card might have me licking my hungry chops.  For much of America, third world conditions are the norm, as is extreme state violence against its citizens, a pervasive and lucrative prison industry, along with high crime rates that result from meagre prospects.  Numerically speaking, this is the reality for many more Americans than Cubans, or Venezuelans, or anywhere else for that matter, aside from the most destitute regions on the planet.  What was it, 40 to 50 million Americans on monthly food stamps at last count before they started blocking large swaths of the country from such necessities?  The fact of the matter is that many citizens of the US and whatver group of poor South American countries you'd like to compare it to just happen to share similar experiences.  Claiming one society is better than the other because of capitalism is just plain reactionary ignorance talking.  You can bake all the apple pies you want inside of that bubble of yours, inhale the fumes, and continue to believe amerikan kapitalism is the savior of the world.  There is another reality however that you're not likely to ever encounter from that vantage point.  But we don't really care.  I'm not a Marxist, but no American leader, for all of their historical bombast, has ever uttered anything as important, relevant, and truthful across the many generations since this was said:

Democracy is the Road to Socialism - Karl Marx

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Seems Venezuela's running out of beer.

Quote:
Cerveceria Polar, which distributes 80 per cent of the beer in the socialist South American country, began shutting down breweries this week because of a lack of barley, hops, and other raw materials, and has halted deliveries to Caracas liquor stores.

I think a certain unpatriotic brewery might be asking to be nationalized!

A_J

Mr. Magoo wrote:

I think a certain unpatriotic brewery might be asking to be nationalized!

Coming soon to Venezeuala: "Victory G̶i̶n̶ Cerveza"

RDP

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3192933/Hugo-Chavez-s-ambassador...

 

Maybe the great leader wasn't so concerned about his people after all.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

What????

I thought only traitors, quislings and enemies of the revolution took their money out of Venuzuela.

Maduro is going to imprison her immediately.  Watch for it.

RDP

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2015/08/22/cuban-doctors-fleeing-venezuela-...

(note that it is an Associated Press story for all you Fox News haters out there)

Why would the doctors want to leave two of the few great paradices left on earth?

 

lagatta

Spam, sausage, eggs, bacon and spam. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anwy2MPT5RE

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

6079_Smith_W wrote:

As for pure socialism, of course no such thing exists except in theory and polemic, but I'm certainly happier here than I think I'd be in one of the states where anarcho-capitalism is dominant.

Now you have me curious. Which states do you think are anarcho-capitalist?

Quote:

Anarcho-capitalists see free-market capitalism as the basis for a free and prosperous society. Murray Rothbard said that the difference between free-market capitalism and "state capitalism" is the difference between "peaceful, voluntary exchange" and a collusive partnership between business and government that uses coercion to subvert the free market.[14] (Rothbard is credited with coining the term "Anarcho-capitalism").[15][16] "Capitalism," as anarcho-capitalists employ the term, is not to be confused with state monopoly capitalism, crony capitalism, corporatism, or contemporary mixed economies, wherein market incentives and disincentives may be altered by state action.[17] They therefore reject the state, seeing it as an entity which steals property (through taxation and expropriation), initiates aggression, has a compulsory monopoly on the use of force, uses its coercive powers to benefit some businesses and individuals at the expense of others, creates artificial monopolies, restricts trade, and restricts personal freedoms via drug laws, compulsory education, conscription, laws on food and morality, and the like.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho-capitalism

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2015/08/22/cuban-doctors-fleeing-venezuela-...

(note that it is an Associated Press story for all you Fox News haters out there)

Why would the doctors want to leave two of the few great paradices left on earth?

Quote:

Ailen Garcia, a 25-year-old dentist, said she fled to Colombia expecting to get a visa to enter the U.S. in a matter of weeks. Instead, she and her husband have been waiting more than six months for a response, all the while renting a small room in a working-class neighborhood of Bogota for $200 a month and preparing for the birth of their first child in two months' time.

"I'm worried about my baby. Where am I going to give birth and in what conditions?" said Garcia. "We're in a state of limbo: without work, with little money and time running out."

More than 50,000 Cuban health care professionals are working in some 66 nations as part of an international outreach program begun in the 1960s. The bulk work in Venezuela, which sends Cuba some 92,000 barrels of oil a day worth about $3.2 billion a year in exchange.

Poor thing she got a FREE education as a dentist and then when she thought she was on her way to personal fortune the damn American's left her stranded in a capitalist shit hole with one of the highest crime rates imaginable.

Imagine with tens of thousands of health care workers being offered a free pass to the capitalist nirvana of the USA only 100 of them bought the idea and then those hundred got fucked by the Americans.  I love irony.

Cry

lagatta

Yes, Colombia and Venezuela are among a few countries in Central America and the northern part of South America that appear to have intractable high violent crime rates, whatever the current government. There is HUGE social inequality for one thing.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Yes, Colombia and Venezuela are among a few countries in Central America and the northern part of South America that appear to have intractable high violent crime rates

A few?

Looking at homicide rates (since nobody seems to publish data on mugging rates), 19 of the top 25 highest murder rates occur in countries in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean.  The other six are in Africa. 

Venezuela is second only to Honduras.  For all the hype, the United States is at # 111, and Canada at #170.

 

lagatta

More than a few, but especially in that particular part of the world. Murder rates at the other end of South America are far lower. The hype about the US is with respect to other First World wealthy countries. And I believe most of the hype was a few decades ago when the US murder rate was far higher than it is now. While any murders are too many there should be a way we could celebrate the steep decline in the rate, without hurting the friends and family of those who have been murdered of late.

NDPP

The Secret Agenda Behind the Venezuela Guyana Conflict  - by Eva Golinger

http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/08/24/the-secret-agenda-behind-the-vene...

"Despite minor disagreements since 1966, the dispute did not become the source of escalating tensions until 2015, when a large oil discovery was made by Exxon right smack in the middle of the Essequibo, and claimed by Guyana..."

RDP

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/423011/venezuela-nicolas-maduro-so...

 

Well written.  "Turning a good or service into a "right to have" does not make that good or service any more plentiful." (paraphrase).

 

 

lagatta

An article that starts off with a quote from the evil Iron Lady...

Where does he drag up this crap?

Duh, life not so good in a country in the global South which (like Alberta) put all its eggs in the oil basket.

I am absolutely not an uncritical "Chavista", or in thrall to any state, but this is mendacious rightwing crap. What the !@#$%& are you doing here on babble? While a wide range of opinions is welcome, this site "news for the rest of us" was originally created for and by activists, in the wake of the 2001 Countersummit in Québec.

Perhaps you and the Russian trolls could just go to your respective rooms and send each other spam all day long!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anwy2MPT5RE

Jailing homeschoolers and climate change deniers? Since when is it a crime to be stupid? (though the homeschoolers are inflicting a substandard and often fundie-driven education on their children).

There is a hell of a lot of actual dire poverty in the US, far more shameful in such a wealthy and powerful country than in Venezuela. Remember Katrina? The pics of the refugees looked like something from the Global South, not just the US South. There is utterly no excuse for the poverty found in the US or even in Canada, where there is enough money to ensure nutritious food, safe and salubrious housing, preventive health measures (including access to gyms, swimming pools etc, and bicycle and walking-friendly towns and cities) and no cutoff of basic home heating and lighting for all.

RDP

Nobody starves in the US.  Everyone gets a certain level of basic healthcare in the US.  This is not the case in 75% of countries in the world.  Your view of the US is simply wrong.  After a catastrophic disaster such is Katrina any region would suffer a horrible fate.  Wealth does not solve everything.

David Suzuki is on record saying politicians that deny climate change should be jailed.  The US has their loons too.

lagatta

Nobody starves in the US? And "basic healthcare"?

What utter nonsense.

I think perhaps you are confusing that country with Sweden, or perhaps Denmark.

As for David, I suspect that he was being facetious. And Dr Suzuki is not a "loon". Climate deniers are.

Go play with your friends on some climate denial site. Leave us alone.

You'll find a wide range of opinions about the Venezuelan government here.

You are a vile troll and just trying to annoy people.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

Nobody starves in the US.

Actually the US has a 1 in a 100,000 death rate from malnutrition. That is not quite as good as Canada's 0.7/100,000 or Russia's 0.6/100,000 but way better than the worst place on the planet, a capitalist country that has been under US protection for a very long time. Haiti is the worst in the world and it is 53 per 100,000.  Venezuela is not great at 3/100,00 but that is better than 118 countries on the list.  Afghanistan where the US has been "helping" the locals for decades is at 27.4/100,000 and 9th on the list. Gee I guess with all those smart bombs and drones being used in the country there is just no money left to provide humanitarian aid to the people caught in the crossfire. Of course that is the just the way of the US imperial system.

Haiti is the poster child for capitalism in the Caribbean. Their elected government was overthrown more than once in favour of imperial business interests partnered with the local business community. That is the same class of people who want to overthrow the democratically elected government of Venezuela.

There can be no doubt the Venezuelan model is working way better than the Haitan model.

http://www.worldlifeexpectancy.com/cause-of-death/malnutrition/by-country/

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

I think that if it's a bit offside to compare Venezuela to the United States, it's just as silly to compare them to Haiti.

Venezuela has the world's largest proven oil reserves.  They're not exactly Biafra.

And I'm not even comparing malnutrition deaths.  It just seems a bit odd that Venezuelans seem, by all accounts other than the Venezuelan government's, to be lacking in some pretty simple and cheap staples.

Rev Pesky

Mr. Magoo wrote:
...Venezuela has the world's largest proven oil reserves...

 

It is rather a common fallacy that oil provides wealth. The wealthiest countries in the world are not oil suppliers, they're manufacturers. Occasionaly those two overlap, as they have in Canada and the USA. Yet in a simple comparison of resource producers compared to resource users, the users are all far better off. Compare Japan to Iraq, Germany to Nigeria, France to Sudan, China to Iran. 

 

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
It is rather a common fallacy that oil provides wealth.

It's true.  Those Saudi royalty actually got so rich by working lots and lots of overtime.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
It is rather a common fallacy that oil provides wealth.

It's true.  Those Saudi royalty actually got so rich by working lots and lots of overtime.

I think he meant wealth that would allow common folks to buy necessities.  The Venezuelan neo-con opposition is envious of the Saudi elite and want to be just like them. Of course that also requires running a brutal dictatorship with no semblance of democracy but I am sure that given half a chance they would try to prove themselves up to the task.

RDP

Haiti is a former colony of France.  Haiti is not under US protection.  It is its own sovereign nation.  The US, and many other nations, help during times of trouble.

lagatta

Oh boy...

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

RDP wrote:

Haiti is a former colony of France.  Haiti is not under US protection.  It is its own sovereign nation.  The US, and many other nations, help during times of trouble.

So let me see a socialist govenment is responsible for all the problems in its country and thus needs to be overthrown for the godd of its people. But a capitalist country like Haiti with recurring "help" from the US and others is not responsible for the shithole that has the worst malnutrition in the world.

Here is a little history of the US's recurring "help" to the Haitians.

Quote:

In 1868, President Andrew Johnson suggested the annexation of the whole island of Hispaniola - present-day Haiti and the Dominican Republic - to secure a US presence in the Caribbean.

His suggestion was not followed, but American warships were active in Haitian waters 17 times between 1862 - when the US finally recognised Haiti's independence - and 1915, when it occupied the country.

Assistant Secretary of State Alvey Adee summed up the US view of Haiti in 1888 when he called it "a public nuisance at our door".

...

Between 1888 and 1915, no Haitian president completed his seven-year term.

Ten were killed or overthrown, including seven in the four years to the US invasion of 1915. Only one died of natural causes.

In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson took control of the Haitian National Bank by sending in marines, who removed $500,000 of its reserves "for safe-keeping" in New York.

The assassination of the Haitian president a year later finally prompted President Wilson to invade Haiti with the aim of protecting US assets and preventing the further strengthening of German influence in the region.

After failing to make the new Haitian legislature adopt a constitution which would allow foreign land ownership, the Wilson administration forced the legislature to dissolve in 1917. It would not meet again until 1929.

The US finally withdrew from Haiti in 1934 as part of President Franklin Roosevelt's "Good Neighbour Policy", which stressed co-operation and trade over military force to maintain stability in the Americas.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8460185.stm

In modern times the US invaded in both 1994 and a decade later in 2004. The people who run Haiti now do so with the complete backing of the US government and it is a dismal place to live where people starve in the streets. Venezuela does not need any US "help" to feed its people and run its affairs. The Chavests are not perfect but compared to American Republicans they seem almost like normal peace loving people. They don't call for sanctions against half or more of the worlds countries and most of the world's population. They don't advocate nuking countries that don't agree with their economic system. They don't have military bases around the globe. 

Venezuela's main sin is that it will not obey the Wall Street financial oligarchy. You keep posting articles mostly written by lying syncophants in publications that spout nothing but the US oligarchy's propoganda.

 

 

ygtbk

Regardless of your political views, it is hard to view this as good news:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-08-26/venezuela-said-to-ready-larger-bank-notes-as-inflation-soars

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

It certainly is not good news.

 

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