The price of oil has dropped way below what Venezuela needs to support its promise to pay all friends of Hugo a zillion quadrillion pesos each, so what can Hugo do? Well, how about pumping more oil? Yeah, that’s the ticket! There are a couple of problems with this, even overlooking his previous promise to punish us by pumping less. First, he’s fired everyone who knew anything about producing oil and replaced them with party hacks so oil production is plummeting, not increasing. Second, he’s nationalized and confiscated the property of oil companies foolish enough to have remained after his ascension to power, so there’s no one around to increase production. Third, his latest plan calls for new oil companies to come in where others were expropriated and supply $20 billion because Hugo doesn’t have it. Assuming there is someone stupid enough to join Chavez in his delusions (what’s China doing with its cash these days?) they’ll deserve everything they lose when Chavez pulls the football away once again.
Personally, I doubt anyone is that stupid and I think Chavez is going down hard. Too bad he’ll bring Venezuela down with him but they voted him in, so that’s tough. We all get the government we deserve, which is what has me so worried these days.