Thursday, February 18, 2016

Smells Like Chavismo Spirit

Deodorant rationing in Venezuela - one to a customer

Our friends in Venezuela have not done at all well under the socialist regime of Hugo Chavez and his successor. From being a wealthy oil state with little poverty 17 years ago, Venezuela's economy has gone steadily downhill until today, according to the World Bank, it has negative economic growth, massive public debt, 32 percent of the population in poverty, and 62 percent inflation, the highest rate in South America. It was into that economic death spiral even before the recent drop in oil prices.

Now, Venezuela's down and dirty socialism is getting personal, as Fox News Latino reports. Beauty-Obsessed Venezuelans Dealing With Another Shortage: Personal Hygiene Products:

Venezuela, a country that takes great pride in its looks, is dealing with an issue that has the country in a major tizzy – shortages in beauty products. That means women and men so accustomed to looking their best are now having to do without shampoo, cosmetics and, hold your breath, even deodorant.

The time is ripe for recalling what our foremost socialist here in the USA, Senator Bernie Sanders (Independent, Vermont Ben & Jerry Land), famously told CNBC:

You can't just continue growth for the sake of growth in a world in which we are struggling with climate change and all kinds of environmental problems. All right? You don't necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country. I don't think the media appreciates the kind of stress that ordinary Americans are working on.

BTW, how many flavors does Ben & Jerry's need to sell? We don't necessarily need 23 of those, either. Would Vermonters be better off if they had only vanilla? I'm just wondering.

Bernie's whole more-consumer-goods-equals-more-hungry-children idea didn't make sense in the first place, given all the actual economic experience to the contrary. But now we have the example of Venezuela, the foremost socialist experiment in the Americas, where poverty is growing right along with a loss of choice - or even availability - of deodorant.

"Growth for the sake of growth" would sound, and smell, pretty good to Venezuelans, I think. 


Anonymous said...

TSB: This is a picture of 'my man'
Bernie's 'Sugar Shack' built by his own hands in the Vermont wilderness. He doesn't like to brag about it like Donald but from far enough away it looks pretty good. (I don't think this photo was far enough away.)

And you'll notice, the 'Berne' doesn't need a bullet proof vest. Now,if I can just raise another $30 for a T-shirt! gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Yesterday it was clear that Bernie had been 'Cruzed'by the media as they harped he had abandoned SC! Look next for a big push to get him to leave the race. It won't work. He's going to take that stump speech to all 13 states and the convention because he's fighting a rigged election system and a fatally flawed opponent. And if she ends up 'out' Bernie will end up 'in'. There are no conservatives left! and thus today's headline: Political science professor: 97% chance Trump is general election winner... gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Ahh the days when Hillary wasn't quite so politically correct! I remember them..well. She was calling for chain gangs and bullhorns back then. Now she's talking about cutting back on APC's for the local Sherrif? gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: If only Rubio had worn his elevator boots this would have been much closer! gwb
Thank you, we have already counted your vote.
TRUMP 63.21% (83,716 votes)
CRUZ 18.03% (23,871 votes)
RUBIO 13.06% (17,289 votes)
KASICH 3.69% (4,885 votes)
CARSON 2.01% (2,671 votes)

Anonymous said...

TSB: One key point I gathered from the R healthcare yelling match: Kasich would eliminate the mandate to buy insurance, prevent refusal for prior conditions and keep the state by state fence lines for health insurance. He would demand transparency on hospital prices and allow 180 days before not starting to pay your hospital bill could hurt your credit rating. He would also offer $$ to hospitals and doctor groups that delivered a certain quality of care at below the median price for that.

The (not discussed) context for this is: 1.Obama made a secret deal early on with one guy to keep the insurers from fighting Obama care- no single payer, no interstate competition, no price transparency, no bidding for drug prices and no tax on medical devices. Another deal later allowed hospitals to charge cash up front for expensive procedures and drugs and protected doctors who chose to buy 'life saving treatments' and resell them at huge profits to desperate relatives.

The key that Kasich is on the take from the bankers and insurance co's is the 180 day delay before you get reported as in default. You just end up losing your life savings 6 months later. They can still charge you anything they want for an aspirin or a box of kleenex and not put it as part of your appendectomy. And that knee surgery that leads to you losing your job at the warehouse or driving a truck will still lead to disability as soon as Labor and Industries is able to close the case and you get moved to medicaid. The doctors, health insurers and drug companies would take this deal tomorrow. Carson is hopeless with his health savings accounts deal when 50% don't even have $1000 for an emergency and the other guys are pretty much faith healers. gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Trump could be our first mob-connected President since Kennedy!
How come Putin doesn't have any casinos? And how come everyone is afraid to bring it up? gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Christie endorses Trump! Now we will really be safe! Here's what Juan Cole said about Christie last night:
New Jersey governor Chris Christie, unlike repeated also-ran Rubio, had to drop out of the GOP race for lack of deep enough donor pockets. One of the reasons Christie is no longer in the race is because he inadvertently offended Adelson by referring to the Occupied West Bank and Gaza as Occupied by the Israelis, which they have been since 1967. Those territories have 4.5 million stateless Palestinians whose air, water and land is controlled by the Israeli army. gwb

TSB said...

IDK about the West Bank and Gaza being 100% controlled by Israel. The West Bank (it's west of the Jordan River) was occupied and annexed by Jordan in 1948; no countries except Britain and Pakistan recognized that claim, and Jordan no longer claims it. I know Palestinians who live there and travel freely to and from Jordan. Gaza has a common border with Egypt, so Israel can't completely control that one, either. If HAMAS would stop firing rockets and digging tunnels into Israel, all those stateless (?) Palestinians might stop wasting their lives in endless losing warfare.