Thursday, June 28, 2018

The Socialist Conundrum

                As people get progressively more ignorant/less wise/dumber and/or spend more time on college campuses, socialism seems ever more attractive, despite the unbroken streak of staggering devastation it has left in its wake around the world, for centuries, without exception.
                In recent years, Venezuela, once the jewel and economic powerhouse of South America, has been utterly destroyed by socialism. A country with arguably the most oil reserves among all nations on earth has been shattered by socialists and their policies, left for dead, a repository of poverty, starvation, violence, death and broken dreams. And staggering quantities of oil.
                The socialist paradise suffered an inflation rate of 43,378 percent over the past year. It now takes 1 million bolivars to buy a cup of coffee in a Venezuelan cafĂ©, according to Bloomberg. Unfortunately, that’s equal to one-fifth of Venezuela’s monthly minimum wage. Five million bolivars is the equivalent of $1.45 in American money, and is equal to a minimum-wage worker’s entire monthly salary. That means it takes 34,483 bolivars to match the spending power of one American…penny. It would require 68,966 bolivars to put one’s two cents worth in, a clichĂ© probably unfamiliar to Venezuelans and one that doesn’t roll off the tongue as well, anyway. The country’s most common bank note is the 100-bolivar bill. It would only take 345 of these to equal one non-red cent. In America, where the inflation rate usually hovers around 4 percent, an average priced house in the heartland costs around $250,000. That would be most of a trillion bolivars.
                Yet, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a self-described “proud member of the Democratic Socialists of America,” just resoundingly won the Democratic congressional election in New York’s 14th district. Ocasio-Cortez is calling for the abolishment of ICE, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency designated to protect the U.S. from human and drug trafficking and terrorism. She defeated long-time Congressman Joe Crowley, despite being outspent approximately 18-1.
                Incredibly, Millennials in the United States overwhelmingly support socialism over capitalism and supported Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton in 2016. The “Democratic Socialists of America” organization is experiencing unprecedented membership growth. Therefore it is ironic that many of Venezuela’s failed socialist leaders have fled to Florida, to escape the destitution they have wrought in their homeland.
                No matter. Venezuela, the Democratic Socialists of America and its growing number of supporters turn their unseeing eyes to you. You too, Cuba, North Korea, and Laos. Perhaps someday the United States will give your nations a run for the money.    

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