Eating Venezuela

Thursday, January 18th, 2007 11:32 am by Neal

Last week we opined on the inevitable collapse of Venezuela into a Marxist-Socialist hell hole (see “Bye bye, Venezuela,”). Read the post for some choice quotations from the maniacal dictator Hugo Chavez.

This week the good folks at bring us this post for more raving insanity from Chavez who is now nationalizing various Venezuelan industries in a plot that sounds like it was lifted from Ayn Rand’s 1957 novel, “Atlas Shrugged.”

“From CNN: Venezuela to nationalize ‘absolutely all’ energy sector.”

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez said on Saturday the country’s entire energy sector had to be nationalized, reinforcing his socialist revolution and possibly giving himself more targets for state take-over.

But he said he would permit foreign firms to hold minority stakes in energy deals.

The anti-U.S. leader, in power since 1999, this week announced he would nationalize power utilities and the country’s biggest telecommunications firm, confirming his status as the catalyst of Latin America’s swing to the left.

“We have decided to nationalize the whole Venezuelan energy and electricity sector, all of it, absolutely all,” Chávez said in his annual state of the nation address to parliament, potentially opening up more projects for state acquisition in the No. 4 crude exporter to the United States.

The president was reinaugurated this week for a term that runs through 2013.

Chávez has already pursued oil and gas projects and power utilities but on Saturday left no leeway for a private company to hold a majority in operations anywhere in the energy sphere.

What will be targeted?
It was not immediately clear whether his pronouncement on nationalizing the whole sector was a precursor to moves against specific projects or companies.

Venezuela will have to judge how closely private firms must be connected to the country’s oilfields, refineries, pipelines, gasoline stations and coal mines to count as targets for nationalization.

Huge oil service companies such as Halliburton and Schlumberger operate in Venezuela but Chávez gave no indication whether deals involving such businesses were now in his sights.

But don’t think that Chavez is content to stop the destruction at Venezuela’s borders. Read coxandforkum on how Chavez plans to hook-up with Iran to “liberate themselves from the [U.S.] imperialist yoke.”

Whatever. In a few years Chavez will be lucky to liberate his own ass from the revolting, starving, Venezuelan peasants.

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