During a televised speech last night, Maduro said that 2015 will see the defeat of the so-called “economic war” his government claims is being waged against Venezuela. Maduro blamed “parasitic right-wing elements and the oligarchy” for the economic crisis affecting the country. Maduro said:
If 2014 was the year we defeated the guarimbas [street barricades], violence, interventionism and the year in which we neutralized the economic war, 2015 will be the year in which we will defeat the economic war and its trauma definitively, which is something that national and international capital have launched against our country.
Maduro and his government often blame the problems affecting the Venezuelan economy – namely inflation and scarcity – on a nebulous “economic war“. The Venezuelan government contends that foreign and national enemies of Venezuela are purposely doing things to damage the Venezuelan economy, although the argument seldom evolves beyond the assertion. For example, the country’s annual inflation rate – which reached 64.4% in September – is seriously damaging to the Venezuelan economy. Yet, rather than admitting mismanagement and taking concrete steps to help get it under control, Maduro would simply claim that the economic war is to blame.
Maduro went on to say;
The smuggling oligarchy and right-wing possess and anti-national and parasitic spirit. They want to use the people to try to achieve their goals and benefit from negative effects.
Shoe Retailer Seized By Government
The Superintendent of Fair Prices, Andres Eloy Mendes, announced last night that the government was temporarily occupying a shoe retailer in Caracas and issuing the owners a fine for allegedly engaging in price speculation.
The store chain is called FLB, and the government is going to supervise the sale of the 251,000 pairs of shoes the store has in stock at what the government calls “fair prices”. The chain operates 30 stores across the country. Mendez explained:
In Venezuela we must arrive in the medium-term at a place where prices are not decided by capitalist ambition. Prices should be associated with their costs.
According to information provided by Mendez, a single pair of women’s shoes cost the store Bs. 83.05, and the store would sell the same pair at Bs. 611.60. From now on, the maximum price FLB can charge for women’s shoes is Bs. 100, while a pair of men’s shoes will not cost more than Bs. 288.
U.N. Set to Deliver Human Rights Recommendations
The United Nation’s Committee Against Torture is set to deliver a series of report, including recommendations, on the human rights situation in Venezuela. The report is expected to be ready by the end of the month.
Finally, pictures courtesy of Noticiero Digital. The pictures show a line outside a state-run Abasto Bicentenario in Caracas where home electronics are being sold as part of an event called Mi Casa Bien Equipada [My Well-Equipped Home].
I’ve been in line since last night… in order to buy, you have to sleep here.