It’s not hard to imagine that lives would be lost due to a lack of maintenance and poor administration of a country.
And this year we were reminded of this the hard way …
At the end of 1998, the Venezuelan electric system was one of the most efficient systems in Latin America. More than 94% of the national territory was electrified.
20 years later, the plants barely operate. The “mega blackouts” this March uncovered the reality of the situation. And this July 22nd the story repeated itself: 16 states out of 24 had no power or internet connection.
17 newborns that were in hospitals died because of this. Two of them died because they were connected to breathing assistance equipment, which stopped working when the blackout happened.
At least 43 people, mostly elderly, died due to not having access to their medications.
Public transport became a complete mess.
The subway lines in Caracas, which is characterized by the constant and incessant deterioration since it became a socialist company run by the government, stopped its operation due to electrical failures.
So Caracas went from being a noisy and active city to a ghost town…
Butcher, bakery shops and other merchants that worked with any sort of refrigeration were losing all their inventory. And some of them, in fact, began to give away perishables before they were useless.
The question is, is it fair that the people of a country pay for the mismanagement of a government that only hides their misdeeds with cheap excuses? And cheats people with shameless lies that seem to have been taken out of a children’s book?
Maybe. Maybe we’re suffering the consequences of getting carried away by populism. The people who supported the socialist party blinded themselves and applauded every word and action their leader took… regardless of the consequences.
And although there’s still a percentage of people that support and defend these socialist politicians (if you can even call them that), I think most Venezuelans have learned their lesson very well.
Certainly, this has been a strong decade for Venezuela. Years filled with protests, lies, and blood…
And now, with the ever-lasting question of “when will this be over?” all Venezuelans are just trying to lead normal lives. With a fearful feeling that the next blackout will take even more lives.
Image credit: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6696099/Venezuelas-children-starve-Maduro-refuses-let-aid.html
Editor’s note: This situation certainly speaks to the danger of socialist economies. The socialist model claims to be about helping those in need, but here we find it accomplishes only loss and pain yet again. RMD
Omar Cagua is a direct response marketing consultant and copywriter who’s worked with startups and 8-figure companies alike. The 20+ years he lived in Venezuela make him a defender of the free market.