What Did Venezuela Use Before Candles?

What Did Venezuela Use Before Candles?

What Did Venezuela Use Before Candles? by Daniel Bier, Foundation For Economic Education


Q: What did socialists use before candles?
A: Electricity.

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It’s an old joke, but unfortunately, dark humor is the reality in Venezuela. The socialist regime of Hugo Chavez and his successor Nicolás Maduro has created catastrophic shortages of toilet paperfood, medicine, comedy, beer, and electricity. (There is, of course, no shortage of its increasingly worthless paper money.)

Rationing and blackouts are a regular occurrence in the socialist country, but things have gotten so bad that Maduro has essentially ordered the entire country to close next week to “save” energy.

It’s a desperate move brought on by a drought that has depleted Venezuela’s hydroelectric capacity. Bloomberg reports:

Venezuela is shutting down for a week as the government struggles with a deepening electricity crisis.

President Nicolas Maduro gave everyone an extra three days off work next week, extending the two-day Easter holiday, according to a statement in the Official Gazette published late Tuesday. …

The government has rationed electricity and water supplies across the country for months and urged citizens to avoid waste as Venezuela endures a prolonged drought that has slashed output at hydroelectric dams. The ruling socialists have blamed the shortage on the El Nino weather phenomena and “sabotage” by their political foes, while critics cite a lack of maintenance and poor planning. …

Venezuela has long suffered rolling blackouts that cripple public services and leave citizens in the dark for days at a time. The extended break seeks to further ease demand on Venezuela’s strained power grid and follows a forced reduction of hours at shopping malls and public institutions.

In a free market, businesses would have had the incentive to make the necessary plans, repairs, and contingencies, and