17 February 2007

The Joys Of Socialism

Bill Lumaye, local radio personality, had a bit on his show a couple of days ago about a magazine that is being distributed by Wake County schools. In this magazine was an article about Hugo Chavez, current strong-arm dictator to be in Venezuela.

The article was a touchy-feely feel-good about Chavez's efforts to socialize the economy there. It talked about socialism being based on cooperation rather than competition. However, it failed to mention that this cooperation is coerced. This is the point at which Bill took offense.

Now I must admit that I have not read the article in question. I can't even recall the name of the magazine, for what that is worth. Everything I am saying here is based on Bill's paraphrasing of the article in question, so don't ask for exact quotes.

Along these same lines is a posting by His Imperial Rottiness about the predictable results of price fixing. It seems that as soon as Senor Chavez fixed meat prices, meat started disappearing from supermarket shelves. For those of you who don't understand why, go read the article. I found that it explained things quite well.

As I was discussing the issue with my associate, he came up with a good question. Since price controls inevitably cause the dearth of the product being price controlled, and given that the same people that try price controls also vehemently oppose private ownership of firearms, why don't they try price controls on firearms?

The answer (and of course he understood this when he asked the question) is that the same fuzzy heads that like price controls and dislike firearms don't understand the effects of price controls. They want to fix prices so that everyone can afford to buy the product, damn the manufacturers who unfairly expect to make a bit of filthy lucre off of their labors. Since they don't like guns, they don't want anyone to be able to afford them, therefore they would never institute price controls on them.

In Venezuela some sort of compromise seems to have been reached, as supermarkets promise to have meats back on the shelves within a few days. It appears as if Hugo is going to subsidize with oil dollars.

That will work for a little while, I guess, but things are not looking good for Venezuela's oil industry, either. It seems as if there's a brain drain going on as the smart people that run the oil company in Venezuela are looking for more posh (and less restrictive) digs elsewhere...like Mexico or Canada. Details on Tom Delay's blog.

What I just can't figure out is why these people have so much influence.

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