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Venezuela Today

Discussion in 'Issues Around the World' started by ethics, Sep 23, 2015.

  1. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Described in a reddit post:

    I don't know about the rest of the country but in my state the long lines are out of control. The government implemented a system in which you are given only one day of the week to be able to buy and this is decided according to your ID number. If your ID's last number is 1-2 you can only buy on Mondays, if it's 3 you only buy on Tuesdays and on and on. That doesn't make the lines any smaller but I guess it would be even worse otherwise. Until recently people used to wake up really early in the morning, usually 4 am, to go to the store and be first in line, waiting several hours until the stores are open or it's their turn to buy. My family tells me they've been waiting in lines as long as 8 hours to get a bag of milk, 2 bottles of cooking oil and flour (to make arepas). Recently they banned people from making lines before stores where opened and started issuing buses with military officers taking anyone who's outside a store before it's open and detaining them for 24 hours. I've heard they make then clean the military's establishment but I have no way of backing this up. They call the buses "Dracula's Bus". This hasn't stopped people from trying to get to the stores early in the morning so what they are doing now is hiding in the bushes so the military can't spot them until they are able to buy.

    People used to buy groceries monthly or bi monthly. Now they are living day to day, buying enough food to be able to eat for that day, as opposed to the whole month or 15 days like before. This is due both to the lack of funds to buy enough groceries for a whole month and because of the food regulations which only let you take a fixed ammount of food in your allowed shopping day. The "basic goods basket", which is the ammount of money required to buy basic goods for a month is priced at 40,000 bsf, while the minimum monthly wage is at 7000bsf. 1kg of meat, which is enough to make 1-2 meals for a family of 5 costs 1000bsf. So with minimum wage you are able to buy 7-14 meals in a month without waging in electricity, water, garbage disposal, cable, telephone, internet, school, clothing, etc.

    People spend their days thinking what line are they going to be in tomorrow. You often hear "I have to go to [store] tomorrow, they are going to sell [item]." Every day, that's all that's in their minds. If they are driving by the city they are constantly checking lines, trying to see what item's being sold at the moment. If they see people with bags on the street they slow down to try to see what did they buy. "What does he have in his bag?", "Damn! Look! They got toilet paper! God Dammit!!". They sometimes open the car's windows to ask "Hey! Where did you buy that from!?".

    This situation has created new jobs. The so called "Bachaqueros". People whose job is to be on a line, buy regulated items and then resell them by many times its original price. People who don't have the time to be on a line has to give in and buy items to the bachaqueros at whatever price they ask for, making the whole business insanely profitable.

    And that doesn't even include the whole Colombian border situation. There are many many more issues happening right now but I just focused on the grocery shopping part of it since that's what you asked for. Again, this is specifically in my state, the rest of the states can be either better or worse off than mine.

    Edit: Wow people are actually sending me money over the internet, Someone even asked me for a paypal account so they could send me money but there's no way I would make you guys send me money just because of my economic situation. Doesn't feel right to get payed without doing anything to earn it. Thank you very much for the kind act and hopefully someone is as kind to you guys as you're being today for me.

    Here's the entire thread if anyone is interested: Whats going on in Venezuela (Economically)? Outsider asking. • /r/vzla
    Allene and dsl987 like this.
  2. dsl987

    dsl987 Member

    I follow the situation in Venezuela pretty closely, mainly because my company does business there, but also because I was born there. The place is a fucking disaster! The trouble is they totally screwed up the free markets and now there is no incentive to produce anything. Everything is now imported, but they've screwed that up as well due to the insane currency controls. The next elections at the end of the year will be very interesting. I believe the opposition will win, but Maduro will throw out the result and claim the election was rigged. I pity the poor folks that live there, it must be complete misery now.
    ethics and Allene like this.
  3. Allene

    Allene Registered User

    I went to high school with a girl who met a student in Halifax from a wealthy Caracas family many years ago. She has been living there ever since. Back about 10 or more years ago, she was back home visiting family and ran into a mutual friend who gave her my email address. Soon I heard from her, along with a photo of her and her family. It was a really nice photo. She looked great, and I told her so. I sent her a photo in return, and that was the last I ever heard from her. I haven't read the link above yet, but I've often wondered how the rich people there are faring.

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