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Author Topic: Breaking news: Life in Socialist Venezuela  (Read 2866 times)

lurker10

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devlux

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOQb7Y5QVO8

Speaking as a whiteguy living in LATAM, I love these, "OMG I'm a whiteguy from suburbia USA slummin in Latin America for the very first time!"  Videos.
They complain about the town being shutdown at night, but look at the clock they're driving around at 2AM!  Even Vegas is mostly dead at 2AM, what do they expect?  More importantly what were they looking for that late at night? Trouble???  They didn't even find that. Truthfully you're more likely to be robbed by the cops than the crooks.  In the USA they call it Civil Forfeiture  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_forfeiture_in_the_United_States
Basically they arrest your money and your money has to post bail and hire it's own lawyer.  Fun stuff!  All you have to do is be carrying cash on you.

Here's a thing you might not know.  In most of Latin America, the newspapers are more like tabloids. 
They show only the bad and they push the limits of truth to their absolute extreme, they make the National Enquirer look positively tame in comparison.
Did someone get robbed, yes, did they die yes.  We're they at the airport?  No they were about 15 miles away and most likely they hopped in an unlicensed cab to save a few bucks, afraid of getting gringo priced by the licensed cabbies.

I lived in Ecuador, Colombia, Venezula for quite awhile.  Never felt nearly as scared as I did walking around in New York.

They keep on about gun free zones, but try doing open carry in the USA, let me know how that works out for you. 
Oh wait never mind, I'll be able to read it in the news. 
https://photographyisnotacrime.com/2016/02/28/texas-man-arrested-for-open-carrying-less-than-two-months-after-open-carry-became-law/

Look, I support your right to own a gun guys.  But you need to realize that 2nd Amendment thing isn't so you can kill your crackhead neighbor when he tries to rob you.  It's so you can stop the government from trampling on your other rights.

At least near the end they start confessing the real problems, low oil price and the country only exports oil, lack of aide because they won't bend to US control and the USA declared them a state sponsor of terror effectively cutting them off from the banking system and barring foreign investment for them. 

This has nothing to do with socialism, it has to do with corruption and that's a people problem.  Problem is the root of Venezuela's corruption is the USA and it's desire to bring VZ's leaders to heel over some lucrative american oil pumping assets that were seized by the government after those same interests were caught exporting gasoline intended for the local populace and claiming they couldn't meet production targets.

VZ needs to develop it's economy and infrastructure.  It can't do that when the rest of the world is embargoing them.  Fortunately despite what the report was showing there is a lucrative blackmarket in dollars that the locals actually use.  They have no faith in their own currency because it can't be used to actually buy anything.

Might be a good project to get NXT infrastructure down into VZ and use NXT to clear transactions.

Compared to some places I've lived, like LA, Caracas is looking pretty nice. 

Socialism is a cultural thing.  It's popular in LATAM because they believe in generations caring for eachother.  Mutual help from grand parents all the way to newborns all living and working together.  So the government supposedly views the populace as one large extended family.  The problem happens when there is no accountability to the stakeholders, the people. Corruption always sets in and without accountability it can't be rooted out.  Elections won't fix it because it's not just elected officials, it's the bureaucrats and they pretty much have jobs for life.

People need to have a spine and stand up and fix things that aren't right.  Otherwise they get the government they deserve. 
An ineffective government is a symptom of an ineffective populace.
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devlux

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7 Rules when visiting North, Central or South America or anywhere else in the world.

#1 Always carry around $100 USD on you, being an outsider, the cops will always want to see your ID and most people look like Andrew Jackson, although some of us tend to look more like more like Ben Franklin these days.
#2 Your tour guide is paid to give you an exciting time.  Pretty much everywhere is boring, ergo this man or woman is paid to exaggerate the truth and even outright lie to you.  Keep in mind that they are well aware that if you are killed they won't get paid, but if you are bored you won't use their services again.  So despite the "danger zone" you were taken to, you were never in any real danger.  Except possibly from the authorities.
#3 You're going to a different culture.  The people grew up different than you did, things will be different and different is scary.  Realize that most parents won't put their children in imminent danger willingly.  If you see young folks around, you're not likely to be in any danger.  If there are no younglings around you should question why you're in that place.
#4 If you look for trouble long enough, trouble will give up waiting and just come find you.  If you found it, now you're in it, so deal with it.  Cash helps a lot in this regard.  Guns are basically useless unless you're the one doing the robbing.
#5 Please leave your trailer park back home.  You're a jet setter now, act like you have some class.  If locals do something, say something, eat something, act a certain way etc join them.  Don't just stand there in shock and horror and complain about how they live their life.
#6 You got no right to judge unless you lived it.  Cultures are different, people are different.  It is what it is.  Drawing comparisons to back home is ignoring the fact that your home sucked too, so you're being ignorant.  If home wasn't boring, why else did you leave?
#7 As cool as you think you look with that cigarette hanging out of your mouth, it's now the unpopular thing to do.  Don't be surprised to see a sign up that says you can't do it there.  For some reason people like to breath.  I say this as a smoker myself.

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EvilDave

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+1 to Devlux.... ;D
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Brangdon

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This has nothing to do with socialism, it has to do with corruption and that's a people problem.
Agreed. I was there briefly for a holiday a few years ago and it mostly seemed fine. I gather since then it has degenerated enormously, and that's mainly because their corrupt economy was propped up by oil, and the crash in the oil price meant everything fell apart. I hope it's not as bad as it looks from the outside, but I'd hesitate to go there now.

lurker10

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Price controls resulting in empty shelves have everything to do with socialism.
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devlux

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Price controls resulting in empty shelves have everything to do with socialism.

No they have nothing to do with socialism and everything to do with greed.
Price controls keep a price down below the market rate.  People swoop in and buy it, then they take it ELSEWHERE and sell it for a profit.

In a truly socialist economy you do not need price controls because there are none so poor that they need price controls on basic necessities in order to survive. 

They don't have a truly socialist economy.  They have the bastard stepchild of socialism and capitalism and right now it's being choked to death by US interference in their sovereign affairs.

For socialism to actually work you need to have a basic income in place that isn't some cruel joke, but is enough that a family collecting it could leave the workforce and still be able to eat, sleep, have clothes to wear, food to eat and not do so in squalor.  This gives people a chance to become whatever it is that they want to become, Whether it is an artist an author, a scientist, or some fat ass sitting on the couch eating dorritos and playing video games and smoking weed.

It's necessary because jobs as we know them are going away.  We may just have to accept that fact that "lazy fat ass who smokes weed all day and collects basic income", may be considered a legitimate career path in the not too distant future.  Keeps him out of the work force for those of us who do want to work and do a good job.

But for any of that to work there needs to be a way to hold our governments accountable.  Only truly accountable government is a direct democracy.  Anything else can be easily corrupted.  However the masses need to be educated or the wisdom of the masses devolves to herdwiring and listening to whatever some talking head on TV says.

No simple answers to a complex problem.  It all starts by caring enough to examine the real problems though, not trying to reinforce our own personal biases.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2016, 04:26:14 pm by devlux »
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lurker10

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Price controls are imposed on businesses as a tool of social justice = socialism. What's a truly socialist economy with no price controls, can you give a historical example?

Besides, nobody said Venezuela is a truly socialist economy whatever that can mean. It is socialist enough to have screwed up lives of its people. Whether it's 100% socialist or 50% I don't care.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2016, 04:25:34 pm by lurker10 »
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devlux

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Price controls are imposed on businesses as a tool of social justice = socialism. What's a truly socialist economy with no price controls, can you give a historical example?

Besides, nobody said Venezuela is a truly socialist economy whatever that can mean. It is socialist enough to have screwed up lives of its people. Whether it's 100% socialist or 50% I don't care.

No because there have been no socialist regimes. 

Most of them have been authoritarian dictatorships that claim to be socialist, but are merely authoritarian regimes.

Price controls are not necessary as long as production is kept high and salaries or basic income are high enough to compensate.
Socialism means you value people more than business. 
The primary role of government in a socialist society is to even the playing field by treating everyone equally while still allowing some mechanism for the truly exceptional to rise.

If you want the government to take care of the people then you are socialist. 
The USA does a limited form of socialism.  You'll be able to start collecting it at age 65.  It's called social security.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2016, 06:42:17 am by devlux »
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lurker10

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Price controls are imposed on businesses as a tool of social justice = socialism. What's a truly socialist economy with no price controls, can you give a historical example?

Besides, nobody said Venezuela is a truly socialist economy whatever that can mean. It is socialist enough to have screwed up lives of its people. Whether it's 100% socialist or 50% I don't care.

No because there have been no socialist regimes. 

Most of them have been authoritarian dictatorships that claim to be socialist, but are merely authoritarian regimes.

Price controls are not necessary as long as production is kept high and salaries or basic income are high enough to compensate.
Socialism means you value people more than business. 
The primary role of government in a socialist society is to even the playing field by treating everyone equally while still allowing some mechanism for the truly exceptional to rise.

If you want to take care of people then you are socialist.  If you think it's the role of the government to take care of people than you are socialist.
The USA does a limited form of socialism.  You'll be able to start collecting it at age 65.  It's called social security.

Socialist regimes can be nothing but authoritarian. They seek to redistribute wealth by decree / law = legal theft, nonconsensual expropriation. There can be one ruler at the top or a big committee of rulers, it doesn't matter to private income generating businesses.

You're a supporter of the idea of basic income, I presume? Then I understand you have an idealistic bookish view of socialism. Sorry, but this idealistic socialism can't exist. What you see in Venezuela is what all socialism endeavors end with. The real world socialism cannot be much different anywhere, it's entitlements backed by fruits of labor of productive members of society until they are milked dry, and then you get price controls, food lines and other pleasantries of the late stage socialism.
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lurker10

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Speaking as a whiteguy living in LATAM, I love these, "OMG I'm a whiteguy from suburbia USA slummin in Latin America for the very first time!"  Videos.

By the way one of the guys in the video has lived in Mexico for years, and he's surprised to put it mildly by what he saw in Venezuela. The other guy has been to many countries and seen real shit too. Apparently not as real as he saw in VZ :)
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maddy83

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So now devlux is defending socialism???

That's a deal breaker for me personally, so I can't be part of any initiative that devlux is attempting to set up. Sorry.

We may just have to accept that fact that "lazy fat ass who smokes weed all day and collects basic income", may be considered a legitimate career path in the not too distant future.

I'll never accept this.
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devlux

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So now devlux is defending socialism???

That's a deal breaker for me personally, so I can't be part of any initiative that devlux is attempting to set up. Sorry.

We may just have to accept that fact that "lazy fat ass who smokes weed all day and collects basic income", may be considered a legitimate career path in the not too distant future.

I'll never accept this.

Explaining, not defending.  There is a huge difference. 
I do believe that basic income is one potential solution to what I view as an impending crisis as jobs go away.
That leans socialist, but that's not what I'm all about and my personal thoughts on the best solution lean quite differently, some day perhaps I'll share them.

European socialism stands in contrast to other endeavors and it stands as a viable counterpoint.  The reason why European socialism works while Latin American style socialism seems to fail is manifold and beyond the reach of a simple forum posting.  Key causes are education levels, poverty levels and sovereign control.  VZ fails in part because the USA called them a state sponsor of terror all over a business deal gone sour.  Crony capitalism at it's finest. As soon as that happened they were cut off from the global finance sector.  VZ government did the rest.
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devlux

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Speaking as a whiteguy living in LATAM, I love these, "OMG I'm a whiteguy from suburbia USA slummin in Latin America for the very first time!"  Videos.

By the way one of the guys in the video has lived in Mexico for years, and he's surprised to put it mildly by what he saw in Venezuela. The other guy has been to many countries and seen real shit too. Apparently not as real as he saw in VZ :)

Where he lives in Mexico is about as much a part of Mexico as Puerto Rico is.  Same with where I live.
Which is why I called it out, he should know better but he's pretending to be shocked.  What he saw in VZ was no worse than any large city pretty much anywhere.  Watch it with the audio off, and compare it to New York or LA, especially in the poorer areas.  Family Dollar runs out of toilet paper all the time, so OMG the store is out of toilet paper is not a valid criticism.
Always check the source on any information and if you check their site http://wearechange.org/  I wouldn't exactly call it a shining beacon of impartiality or journalistic integrity.  It's yellow journalism, selling fear. Fear is a powerful weapon and in this case it's totally unfounded, see my above post.  Using fear to sell stuff is just sadism.  It says I care more about money than I do about helping to resolve the problem.

Fun picture from the site I just criticised.  Posting it because it sums up the situation pretty much everywhere.
http://wearechange.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/TsaArticle1.jpg
The quote in the picture sums up my political views nicely, for anyone who cares to know what they are.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2016, 11:23:59 pm by devlux »
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maddy83

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So now devlux is defending socialism???

That's a deal breaker for me personally, so I can't be part of any initiative that devlux is attempting to set up. Sorry.

We may just have to accept that fact that "lazy fat ass who smokes weed all day and collects basic income", may be considered a legitimate career path in the not too distant future.

I'll never accept this.

Explaining, not defending.  There is a huge difference. 
I do believe that basic income is one potential solution to what I view as an impending crisis as jobs go away.
That leans socialist, but that's not what I'm all about and my personal thoughts on the best solution lean quite differently, some day perhaps I'll share them.

European socialism stands in contrast to other endeavors and it stands as a viable counterpoint.  The reason why European socialism works while Latin American style socialism seems to fail is manifold and beyond the reach of a simple forum posting.  Key causes are education levels, poverty levels and sovereign control.  VZ fails in part because the USA called them a state sponsor of terror all over a business deal gone sour.  Crony capitalism at it's finest. As soon as that happened they were cut off from the global finance sector.  VZ government did the rest.

Where did you get the idea that European socialism "works"? It is a horrible system. Please read my thread regarding the subject:
https://nxtforum.org/pub-crawl/living-under-socialism/
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devlux

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This is good information maddy83, thank you I've learned something new.
Understand that my position on government is that the government that governs the least governs the best.
I'm not sure there is a category for where I slot in.  One day if I find a label I promise to use it.
My comment on socialism working, was meant as a counter point to lurker who claimed that all socialism fails.
This is what I meant by working.  The situation in Finland is not the same situation as those who live in Venezuela, or at least it doesn't appear to me to be, but I could be wrong.  Perhaps it just hasn't gotten that bad yet.  A capitalist society like the USA has it's own ills.  A 3 month wait to see a Dr can be the norm there too even with insurance.  What's worse is that it is not that uncommon to have to take out a second mortgage if your health insurance decides to drop you.

But don't mistake my statements on socialism as a statement in support of it.  It was merely showing the contrasting view and the onus for it.
There are aspects of socialism I like.  There are aspects of capitalism I like.  There is neither that I can honestly say that I support to it's logical extreme.  Extremes are bad in general especially in the case of socialism vs capitalism.
These are opposite ends of a spectrum, but that entire spectrum represents a false dichotomy.  Other forms of governance are possible without resorting to anarchy, even forms which take nothing from either of them.  You just have to think differently and be open to trying new things.  Thankfully for everyone, I have no aspirations to political office, so no chance I'll ever get to try them.  I'm stuck here trying to create change from the bottom by changing the financial system.  :D
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maddy83

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But don't mistake my statements on socialism as a statement in support of it.  It was merely showing the contrasting view and the onus for it.
There are aspects of socialism I like.  There are aspects of capitalism I like.  There is neither that I can honestly say that I support to it's logical extreme.  Extremes are bad in general especially in the case of socialism vs capitalism.
These are opposite ends of a spectrum, but that entire spectrum represents a false dichotomy.  Other forms of governance are possible without resorting to anarchy, even forms which take nothing from either of them.  You just have to think differently and be open to trying new things.  Thankfully for everyone, I have no aspirations to political office, so no chance I'll ever get to try them.  I'm stuck here trying to create change from the bottom by changing the financial system.  :D

Ok buddy, fair enough.

I am a bit sensitive on the subject, since socialism is exactly what I want to get away from in crypto, so I don't want to see crypto evolving towards that direction.
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devlux

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Socialism purports to give everyone their equal share.  Capitalism purports to give everyone only what they earn and not one penny more.

I say that you are worth exactly whatever you believe you are worth, not one penny less.
I say that if you act like a sheep you'll soon find yourself surrounded by wolves.
I say that no matter how you label it, controlling the money supply is how oppressors oppress.
The correct answer is to take back the money supply, no government has any business involving itself in the dealings between two people.

I view the entire cryptocurrency movement as a large group of folks agreeing with me in principal and deciding we'll sort out the details later.  :)
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