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View Diary: The Booming Venezuelan Economy, and how it affects Monte Carmelo (74 comments)

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  •  How to manage a sudden oil windfall... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mia Dolan

    ...in a developing economy has been of interest to economists for around forty years.  I once took a class with one of the pioneers in this field, though I was not an economics major and the details were lost on me.  But I do know that Venezuela under Chavez has gone against all sensible recommendations about how to invest its amazing windfall.  The boom in employment is completely in the public sector, and it's largely in spurious jobs unconnected to any development (as opposed to political) strategy.  It's hard to imagine that infusion of wealth producing less improvement in the standard of living of poor Venezuelans than what they've experienced.  Obviously some Venezuelans are living a lot better, but it's not poor ones.  And then there are the billions wasted on military purchases--and they are wasted, because short of nuclear weapons there's no way for Venezuela to deter a US invasion, if such a thing were ever on the cards.

    I have no problem with Chavez, apart from his meddling in Colombia's affairs.  I think Venezuela is a democracy and chavismo is what the majority wants.  But I don't think he's been much of a steward of Venezuela's good economic fortune over the past few years.  Compared to what Argentina's Kirchners, for instance, have done with a much smaller bonanza derived from booming feed-grains prices, Chavez has been a hopeless spendthrift.

    -5.38/-3.74 I've suffered for my country. Now it's your turn! --John McCain with apologies to Monty Python's "Protest Song"

    by Rich in PA on Sun Apr 13, 2008 at 05:51:32 PM PDT

    •  If I can find another Bloomberg article... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rex Manning

      ...it will say that the private sector has grown even faster than the public sector under Chavez.  But I'm pretty sure that's already covered in the CEPR report.  Did you read it?

      All of the jobs created are obviously not just in the public sector, then.

      •  Which makes sense. (0+ / 0-)

        Government sponsored, WPA, style projects where the government pays small contractors or citizens directly leads to greater spending in the private sector which leads to entrepreneurs starting businesses to take advantage of that available money (restaurants, theaters, retail stores and such).

        •  From the very article I based this diary on (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Rex Manning

          Most job growth in Venezuela has taken place in the private, not the public sector. In fact, the private sector is growing faster than the public sector. "Private employment was a larger percentage of the labor force (75.0 percent) in the first half of 2007 as compared to the first half of 1999 (71.6 percent)."

          And it was only in the fifth paragraph.  Sheesh.  Some people just don't want to enlighten themselves.  It sure does make sense, especially if people like Rich in PA bother to read.

    •  Yes (0+ / 0-)

      But I don't think he's been much of a steward of Venezuela's good economic fortune over the past few years.  Compared to what Argentina's Kirchners, for instance, have done with a much smaller bonanza derived from booming feed-grains prices, Chavez has been a hopeless spendthrift.

      I would love to see someone write a diary about one of the successful left-leaning/socialist governments and Latin America, but all we get is one-sided garbage about a clown who had the fortune to be sitting on a lot of oil when oil prices spiked.  The Kirshners?  Have they called Bush the devil?  No thanks then.  

      •  I understand. Personally, Lula is one... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mia Dolan

        ...that should get more attention.

        But it's not people like us that keep bringing up Chavez.  It's the US media that feels like it is their job to take every little snippet of Venezuelan politics and twist it into something that makes Chavez look like a dictator/terrorist.

        I personally don't think the CIA is done meddling with the Venezuelan democracy, so I'm going to defend his image whenever I can.  Who knows what kind of sinister action the trashing of Chavez is leading up to.  The American public is being primed for Chavez's undemocratic downfall to be swept under the rug, IMHO.

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