Venezuela

Discussion in 'Political Discussions' started by Kizmet, Jul 26, 2018.

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  1. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  2. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    Under capitalism, you have millionaires. Under socialism, you have quadrillionaires.
     
    Luciano700 and heirophant like this.
  3. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    All the money you can eat.
     
  4. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    I'd say the Venezuelans could use it for toilet paper, but at this point they're probably not eating enough for it to matter.
     
  5. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Other than the tried-and-true solution of starting a war with the U.S. and losing ... how does Venezuela get out of this mess? Surely, with the largest proven oil deposits on earth, some enterprising nation could come along and help them re-fit and get oil production back in a big way, for a cut of the profits and/or first dibs on the new supply. They'd have to topple Maduro, but that should be relatively easy, with seasoned operatives. China ... Saudi Arabia ... Russia?
     
  6. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    As pioneered by Spain which was probably better off without its colonies. Not that they truly wanted that war.

    China is already in that game. Venezuela can't repay its Chinese debts.
     
  7. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    I was thinking of this "war" . . . https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mouse_That_Roared
    Or the movie version: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mouse_That_Roared_(film)

    As to the debts, you can bet that China isn't about to let Venezuela (or anyone else) off the hook ... ever. China will be getting something for their trouble -- doesn't look good for Venezuela.
     
  8. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

  9. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    Petroleum.

    If it ever hopes to get its act in order, Venezuela needs to sell the oil and have money flowing in in exchange for it, not give the oil away to China to repay debt that Venezuela wasted a generation earlier.

    The Chinese are doing this everywhere, making huge loans to African countries or whatever it is (using money the Chinese make running huge trade surpluses with the US) that the loan recipients will eventually have to repay. As the debt burden grows and the wealth of all of these countries (mostly raw materials) is flowing to Beijing, resentment against China will probably grow as well.
     
  10. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Another one then, a comedy about a small, bankrupt European principality, Lampidorra, seeking an American bailout. No war, this time. This one came out in 1952 and I remember seeing it around 1953-4, when I was 10 or 11. I can still remember some scenes quite vividly. I have the darnedest memory for things of 60+ years ago ... entertainment was generally good back then - no doubt about it.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penny_Princess
     
  11. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    I don't know how they can do that. I hear Venezuela's oilfields are in complete chaos. Sadly deficient in equipment, infrastructure and people qualified to build / maintain it. That's part of what's done them in - basically neglect of what makes their economy run - and now doesn't. It would take a LOT of money - and the country basically doesn't have ANY.

    Heirophant - if you were the Venezuelan Oil Minister, Minister of Economic Affairs or Supreme Dictator, even - what would YOU do to fix it?
     
  12. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    So don't nationalize them when your government in general is in complete chaos.

    Supreme Dictator! I like that. (Shut up, Stanislav.)

    When brand new petroleum resources are discovered somewhere in the world today, people don't just throw up their hands because there aren't already producing wells in place. Rights to develop the felds are sold to petroleum companies in exchange for some division of the proceeds. I'm not sure how the technical details of those contracts look, but there's no end of precedent for them. So invite Exxon, BP, Shell, Total, Chevron and all the rest to bid on contracts for this or that Venezuelan oil field. Given Venezuela's reserves, if the government was stable and reliable, they would come rushing in with handfuls of cash.
     
  13. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    OK -

    Dear Nicolás Maduro:

    I hear you used to be a bus driver. That's a good job. Why did you ever quit? My son is a bus driver - so I like bus drivers. I have to.
    Now to business. I suggest you appoint our friend Heirophant as Oil Minister -or maybe Supreme Dictator - he'd like that! He has enchufe with the American Oil companies and can fix everything. ¡No se preocupe!

    Su nuevo amigo,

    Johann
     
  14. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Exxon-Mobile moved next door to Guyana when their Venezuelan stuff was taken. Great for Guyana if they find what they think is there.
     
  15. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2018
  16. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    What worries me these days is the continuous erosion of the Monroe Doctrine. The process began in earnest with Jimmy Carter and the Panama Canal. We controlled the Canal Zone because in the event even of a renewed Cold War the U.S needs guaranteed access to the Canal and the unquestioned (if unspoken) ability to deny the Canal to anyone else. Since then we have see the growth of Chinese investment and influence in Latin America. Now, compromise was occasionally necessary as in the case of Cuba. But even if we couldn't drive the USSR out of Cuba completely, we were able to restrict the use of the island for military purpose.

    Venezuela is ripe for a Chinese alignment. And as if that weren't enough to keep the Navy brass awake at night (yes, they ARE thinking about all this), Mexico's incoming President would dearly love to play the Chinese off against the U.S. Not the first time; even Porferio Diaz cozied up to the British for the same purpose in the Ninteenth Century. In both cases, the foreign power will provide otherwise unimaginable capital investment as well.

    In a United Nations world, the Monroe Doctrine theoretically has no place. It's illegal. Too bad; the first duty of the U.S. Military is to retain effective control over the Western Hemisphere. If we need to go into Venezuela to keep the Chinese military out, we will do it. Unless, of course, the President demurs.
     
  17. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    The rent wasn't too damn high but the lease was up. I'm not sure what we could have done to retain control of the Panama Canal.

    Venezuela has made problems for its neighbors so any military moves would likely be in partnership with them. Maybe.
     
  18. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    Hmmm. Invade Venezuela in order to start a war with the Chinese. On top of Iraq. On top of Afghanistan. Can we press the pause button on that for just a second?
     
  19. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    I couldn't agree more! Besides, like the saying goes, countries don't have friends, they have interests. If Mexico is playing China and the U.S. off against each other, then U.S. policymakers have only themselves to blame for having failed utterly to maintain a close cooperative relationship with their next door neighbor.

    As for the Monroe Doctrine, if the U.S. wants to stop the Chinese from gaining influence in the Western Hemisphere, then they'll have to step up with assistance, not threats. I've seen firsthand how the Chinese have gained an enormous amount of influence in Dominica -- ironically through what was once called "dollar diplomacy". Meanwhile the U.S. hasn't shown the slightest interest in the place in all the twenty years I've been active there.
     
  20. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Then, if the U.S. should play another country off against Mexico, that will be the fault of Mexican policymakers for not maintaining a close, cooperative relationship with their next door neighbor?

    Well, there was the U.S. Navy after Maria.
     

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