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Venezuela: Should there be educational requirements for elected office?

SonOfDaedalus

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I've been looking at the situation in Venezuela. A lot of people blame socialism or American interference or oil prices for the catastrophe. But there is little talk about the real problem. The real problem is Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro were never qualified to run a government. Chavez went to military school and Maduro never even finished high school. How could people with such basic educational levels be expected to deal with complex macro economic problems?

I think for democracy to survive there must be some basic educational requirements for lawmakers, governors, and heads of state. At a minimum, they should have a Masters in economics.

How did the United States prosper so far without educational requirements? Well, from the beginning this country has been run by elites. Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and Benjamin Franklin were intellectual and social elites. And for a long time the political parties were controlled by the wealthy elites who usually only promoted candidates who were well qualified.

I predict that the increasingly complex problems we face will be handled by completely incompetent leaders and voter confidence in democracy will dwindle ushering in an age of dictators like Putin. Russia is an example of a nation where people have lost faith in democracy.

Should there be some educational or training requirements for elected offices?
 

Neomalthusian

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Chavez described himself as a Marxist.

Economics is a social science.

The social sciences have the highest proportion of self-identified "Marxist" professors of any of the academic disciplines, at somewhere between 5% to 18% (the latter from a 2006 survey). And in general the social sciences are far and away the most overwhelmingly politically liberal, and are thus the most likely to be sympathetic to communist and Marxist sentiments of any academic discipline.

It seems that you are trying to make the failure of a certain set of policies about something other than the policies, and instead about some personal attribute. The social sciences of American academia are not going to educate away one's Marxist sympathies. On the contrary, they will probably be promoted, welcomed and strengthened.

If a country is willing to empower a Marxist, then making sure the person has a college education (especially in the social sciences) is not going to protect the country from Marxism, because plenty of people can make their way through college and even grad school with their Marxist sentiments intact.
 

chuckiechan

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I've been looking at the situation in Venezuela. A lot of people blame socialism or American interference or oil prices for the catastrophe. But there is little talk about the real problem. The real problem is Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro were never qualified to run a government. Chavez went to military school and Maduro never even finished high school. How could people with such basic educational levels be expected to deal with complex macro economic problems?

I think for democracy to survive there must be some basic educational requirements for lawmakers, governors, and heads of state. At a minimum, they should have a Masters in economics.

How did the United States prosper so far without educational requirements? Well, from the beginning this country has been run by elites. Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and Benjamin Franklin were intellectual and social elites. And for a long time the political parties were controlled by the wealthy elites who usually only promoted candidates who were well qualified.

I predict that the increasingly complex problems we face will be handled by completely incompetent leaders and voter confidence in democracy will dwindle ushering in an age of dictators like Putin. Russia is an example of a nation where people have lost faith in democracy.

Should there be some educational or training requirements for elected offices?

At their basic roots, they were once Spanish colonies, and thus corruption, malfeasance, and malaise was baked into the cake from the get go: "Here, you be the king and solve my problems without help from the Yankee Imperialists". As socialists, the could see failure on the horizon, but had no vision of how to correct it. They bought into the Marxist Socialist BS. Once people lose sight of their goal to better themselves economically, they give up. That is a problem with tribes. You only compare yourself to your peers, you don't look outward. Quality control goes to hell, people get poorer, and as industries close, people get less capable of doing difficult tasks.
 

SonOfDaedalus

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Chavez described himself as a Marxist.
Economics is a social science.

The social sciences have the highest proportion of self-identified "Marxist" professors of any of the academic disciplines, at somewhere between 5% to 18% (the latter from a 2006 survey). And in general, the social sciences are far and away the most overwhelmingly politically liberal and are thus the most likely to be sympathetic to communist and Marxist sentiments of any academic discipline.

It seems that you are trying to make the failure of a certain set of policies about something other than the policies, and instead about some personal attribute. The social sciences of American academia are not going to educate away one's Marxist sympathies. On the contrary, they will probably be promoted, welcomed and strengthened.

If a country is willing to empower a Marxist, then making sure the person has a college education (especially in the social sciences) is not going to protect the country from Marxism, because plenty of people can make their way through college and even grad school with their Marxist sentiments intact.

Economics is closer to mathematics than social sciences. It's an analysis of complex systems using mathematical models.

Nicolas Maduro was a bus driver. It doesn't matter if his political ideology is conservative or liberal or Marxist if he isn't competent. Regardless of political ideology, there are basic functions of government and economics that bus-driver level of education is simply not sufficient for.

It seems your view is simplistic. The problems with Venezuela are Marxism. Real world problems are far more complex and multi-faceted. And it seems obvious that for an oil-rich country like Venezuela the most important factor is proper management of resources. You have to make provisions for oil price fluctuations.

Any country left or right can borrow more than it can afford to pay. Any country can run out of reserve currencies if not properly managed.

Another reason the United States has been successful is that the Fed is independent from the political system. The Fed is mostly run by economists. I guess, according to you, the Fed is run by a bunch of Marxists.
 

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Intelligence, integrity, and judgment seem to me more important for political leadership than any particular education credential.
 
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SonOfDaedalus

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Intelligence, integrity, and judgment seem to me more important for political leadership than any particular education credential.

You wouldn't say the same thing of an airline pilot. You wouldn't vote for some intelligent guy with a lot of integrity to fly your plane. The problem is that people underestimate how difficult it is to fly an economy. And the difficulty has been rapidly increasing as economies have become larger and more globally interconnected.

Yes, intelligent people who rely on their well-educated advisers have done a good job in the past. But things are getting more complex and we need leaders who have a deep enough understanding to know which advisers to listen to.

How do you run an economy if you don't understand macroeconomics?
 

SonOfDaedalus

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Chavez described himself as a Marxist.

Do you fully understand Marxism? I'll admit I don't.

Marx was a genius like Hagel and Freud. They created extremely elaborate intellectual frameworks that very few people really understand. I hate ideologies in general because they attempt to create some set of principles that explain something very complicated. But it's almost impossible for any single ideology that to deal with all the variations we find in the real world. This causes the ideologue to deny reality when it doesn't fit his ideology. Or force his ideology upon reality.

Marxism is based on the ideas of Hagel and Kant. Do you understand them?

Watch this and tell me you understand Marxism or you believe that Chavez or Maduro understood him.

 

Oozlefinch

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The problems with Venezuela are many.

However, Socialism is what has led to the downfall of the nation. And there is really no other way around that.

One thing that made Venezuela fragile economically is that it is a "one trick pony". During the "Golden Age of Chavez", the price of oil was at record highs. This allowed him to pump huge amounts of their economy into Social and Socialist programs. Mostly he was able to do this because he took over the government at the tail end of the 1996 oil collapse, which saw inflation rates of 60%. So long as oil was high, he could fund just about anything he wanted.

And during that time, many areas of their economy stagnated. The Nationalization movements of the Chavez government drove most international industries out of the country, and even today is why most companies do not look to that country for expansion. Why risk putting in a new Widget Factory in Venezuela, when there is a real threat that the government might just seize it? Better to invest in India or Brazil. And because of the runaway inflation, even companies that are still there are closing up shop.

A few months ago Kellogg's closed up shop in Venezuela. They simply shuttered their factories and walked away. Toyota, Ford, and most other companies have done the same. Simply taking their losses and walking away, it was costing to much to remain there.

And it is mostly because of their economy. The economy of Venezuela is a complete and utter wreck, and I do not think it can be fixed anymore. The only solution will probably be a revolution and complete change in government, along with creating a completely new currency.

Remember, the 1996 oil crash saw inflation of 60%. What there is in that country today is completely off the charts. In 2008 (which was part of the "High Times" for Hugo Chavez), the exchange rate of the Venezuelan Bolivar for the US Dollar was 2 to 1. 1 US Dollar got you 2 Bolivars.

20 years later, a single US Dollar will get you almost 250,000 Venezuelan Bolivars. They are not starving because there is no food, they are starving because the money is so worthless that nobody can buy food. Their economy is almost entirely barter today, more closely resembling a Neolithic economy than a modern one. And the refugees that are escaping are even turning to prostitution, at the rate of under $20 for "services".

https://nypost.com/2018/12/24/women-so-desperate-to-escape-venezuela-they-sell-hair-breast-milk-sex/

No, this can be blamed on nothing but the failed country and it's Socialist policies. No other country in the world has been suffering these kinds of horrors in decades. Not even the ones that rely upon oil for their economy, like Saudi Arabia.
 

SonOfDaedalus

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So long as oil was high, he could fund just about anything he wanted.

Let me stop you there and ask a question. Is there any principle in socialism that says that Chavez should fund his social programs using borrowed money? Is there anything in socialism that demands that Chavez spend more per year than the oil revenue in the good years? Is there anything about socialism that required Chavez to ignore the reality of oil price fluctuations?

Oil companies like Exxon don't collapse every time the price of oil falls because they plan for the fluctuations.

Is it possible that mismanagement is the biggest problem?
 

Oozlefinch

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Do you fully understand Marxism? I'll admit I don't.

Marx was a genius like Hagel and Freud.

Marx was a conman. He lived almost his entire life through charity of the upper class (specifically Engels, wealthy son of a wealthy German industrialist).

It is not that it can not be understood, it is nonsensical. And ultimately every nation that tried to operate to those principals has failed. And they always will. Ultimately all they are is an attempt to justify anarchy and theft.
 

SonOfDaedalus

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Marx was a conman. He lived almost his entire life through charity of the upper class (specifically Engels, wealthy son of a wealthy German industrialist).

It is not that it can not be understood, it is nonsensical. And ultimately every nation that tried to operate to those principals has failed. And they always will. Ultimately all they are is an attempt to justify anarchy and theft.

So you read Das Kapital and understood it?
 

Athanasius68

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Let me stop you there and ask a question. Is there any principle in socialism that says that Chavez should fund his social programs using borrowed money? Is there anything in socialism that demands that Chavez spend more per year than the oil revenue in the good years? Is there anything about socialism that required Chavez to ignore the reality of oil price fluctuations?

Oil companies like Exxon don't collapse every time the price of oil falls because they plan for the fluctuations.

Is it possible that mismanagement is the biggest problem?

It seems that you are asking a socialist community to function within a capitalist structure. The problem is that by definition socialism is 'mismanagement.'
 

SonOfDaedalus

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It seems that you are asking a socialist community to function within a capitalist structure. The problem is that by definition socialism is 'mismanagement.'

See, that's not an intelligent answer. The definition of socialism is not mismanagement. That's just immature namecalling. By the way, I'm not a socialist or a follower of Marx.

Venezuela has enormous oil reserves that could have been better managed. Do you deny that any country can run enormous deficits regardless of ideology? Our most conservative presidents have led us to our biggest deficits.

Please explain where socialism requires you to spend more than your oil production revenue during times of high oil prices? Explain to me where socialism requires you not to plan for price fluctuations?

This is a case of mismanagement by Chavez followed by Maduro's inability to deal with a macroeconomic problem like hyperinflation.

I totally agree that they overspent on social programs but I don't think socialism requires you to spend more than you have. That's just mismanagement.
 

Oozlefinch

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Let me stop you there and ask a question. Is there any principle in socialism that says that Chavez should fund his social programs using borrowed money?

He did not borrow any money. He did not have to, the amount of money that oil was bringing in was huge.

However, the programs were not sustainable. They were all entirely based around the concept that oil would always remain at that price, and that the money would flow in forever.

They did not even consider that they were in a "bubble". And when that bubble collapsed, that is when the other problems kicked in.

You see, the oil money was not enough. They also nationalized huge segments of their economy. When Chavez took power, only around 60% of their economy was based on oil. But because oil was worth so much, they wanted more. They used to share 1/3 of their oil fields with Exxon, Conoco, Chevron, and BP. Part of that agreement was that the other companies would share with Venezuela the results of any exploration done, and share the costs of refining and transportation. Venezuela broke those agreements, and the other partners all packed up and went home. So now that "33%" gets them nothing, and they barely have the refining capability to supply their own needs.

This is where it really gets rough. In 2009 they seized the rice processing facilities of a US company Cargill. But there has been little maintenance done after that, and most reports state that it has not worked in 2 years. Machines have broken down, and they lack the experts or replacement parts to get them working again. The machines were made for Cargill using proprietary technology, which needless to say Cargill has no interest in sharing (or replacing) for the government.

Pretty much the entire banking industry has been nationalized since 2009. The entire industry has been taken over by the Government, and their international credit ratings have plummeted because of this. Basically they take what they needed from the banks, as if it was the same thing as printing money.

And the rest of their industrial sector has been similarly destroyed. Steel, gold, aluminum, communications, power, and transportation were all nationalized. They even destroyed a large segment of their own tourism industry by themselves.

In 2011, they announced that they would seize the private homes and businesses on the Los Roques archipelago, a large tourist destination. What happened was the almost complete collapse of tourism to the region.

No, this entire decade plus of Nationalization is the problem. Because even with good management, they would be having the same problems.

Nobody wants to do business with a crook, and that is how they have been acting. They shoved out most of the International Companies that had been investing in Venezuela for decades, , and many took huge losses. And now that things are falling apart, nobody wants to go back and fix the things breaking because they are sure they will never get paid.

It is like taking your car to a local mechanic, and saying you will pay them $100 a month for 5 months if they give you your car back. You pay them $200, then stop paying. Then 2 years later something else breaks on your car, and you expect the same mechanic to fix it again on the same terms, even though you never paid him the last time he fixed it.

For your claim to be right, every single sector of Venezuela would have to have bad management. Power, communications, oil, refining, food production, food processing, food distribution, etc, etc, etc. That is simply not possible. What you have is a failed government.
 

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Intelligence, integrity, and judgment seem to me more important for political leadership than any particular education credential.

Only for candidates smart and skilled enough to pick qualified advisors and then listen to them.

Politicians tend to have big egos, which makes the above less likely.
 

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Chavez described himself as a Marxist.


I could give a rat's ass what he described himself "as". Steve Bannon describes HIMSELF as a Leninist. It's totally meaningless what an uneducated moron "describes themselves as". I could have a drunken uncle who "describes himself" as a Wall Street expert because he played Monopoly.

Socialism can lead to ruin if applied in a confiscatory and pure fundamentalist manner. Capitalism can lead to ruin for the same reasons.
Purity and fundamentalism spring from the decay of critical thought and reason. Economic systems are set up for human beings, which is why they are described as social sciences, therefore in order for them to be sustainable, they must SERVE the largest number of human beings.

The VZ brand of socialism is an absolute failure because it failed to serve the largest number of people, it skewed too far to the left, it confiscated people's wealth. It was fundamentalist and purist and, most of all, managed like a dumpster fire by uneducated people.
 

Xelor

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I've been looking at the situation in Venezuela. ...The real problem is Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro were never qualified to run a government. Chavez went to military school and Maduro never even finished high school. How could people with such basic educational levels be expected to deal with complex macro economic problems?

I think for democracy to survive there must be some basic educational requirements for lawmakers, governors, and heads of state. At a minimum, they should have a Masters in economics.

How did the United States prosper so far without educational requirements? Well, from the beginning this country has been run by elites. Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and Benjamin Franklin were intellectual and social elites. And for a long time the political parties were controlled by the wealthy elites who usually only promoted candidates who were well qualified.

I predict that the increasingly complex problems we face will be handled by completely incompetent leaders and voter confidence in democracy will dwindle ushering in an age of dictators like Putin. Russia is an example of a nation where people have lost faith in democracy.

Should there be some educational or training requirements for elected offices?

Just to answer your most basic question, Hell Yes!

Red:
Decades of poor governance have driven Venezuela (Ven), once one of Latin America’s most prosperous countries, to economic and political ruin, and Chavez and Maduro's ineptitude materially contributed to the nation's devolution to that status.

Too, oil detrimentally catalyzed Ven's progression to its current state -- it's what gave Ven Dutch Disease (See also: The Paradox of Plenty and meta-analysis of it); however and ironically, to emerge from its malaise, Ven must establish mechanisms that productively generate and allocate investment of and in the country’s vast oil revenues, which are the largest in the world. (And it needs to do so before "green energy" innovation anuls Ven's ability to do so at maximum profitability. Timing is "everything," which is why early birds get worms.)


Blue:
Democracy's success, the extent of it, not merely binary measures of it, depends not only on having enlightened leaders, but also on having a well educated polity. Having a largely benighted polity, a nation is better having a command economy and political system, for to have democracy (of any stripe) in such a setting is to empower "the blind" to make the decision that determine a nation's/economy's direction, "the blind" leading both "the blind" and everyone else.

As for a leader being required to have master's in economics, well, I'm disinclined to stipulate that a leader have formally obtained that degree. I would expect that executive leaders of the highest ranks (presidents, department secretaries and their deputies, agency directors/administrators) have mastered the content, skills, techniques and concepts taught in certain undergrad and graduate level economics courses.
  • Minimum:
    • Intermediate macro theory and policy
    • Intermediate micro theory and policy
    • Economic statistics (this is basically introductory quantitative methods; this version of it merely has econ applications rather, say, than archeology or geology ones)
    • Cost Benefit Analysis
    • Money and Banking
  • Desired, but not required:

Pink:
Basically, yes, though there are some exceptions as goes formal intellect credentials; however, all of them, until 2017, exhibited the most essential element of "smarts": the sense to know that despite what may seem sensible in one's own mind, experts are actually expert and their input should be heeded.
 

RaleBulgarian

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I've been looking at the situation in Venezuela. A lot of people blame socialism or American interference or oil prices for the catastrophe. But there is little talk about the real problem. The real problem is Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro were never qualified to run a government. Chavez went to military school and Maduro never even finished high school. How could people with such basic educational levels be expected to deal with complex macro economic problems?

I think for democracy to survive there must be some basic educational requirements for lawmakers, governors, and heads of state. At a minimum, they should have a Masters in economics.

How did the United States prosper so far without educational requirements? Well, from the beginning this country has been run by elites. Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and Benjamin Franklin were intellectual and social elites. And for a long time the political parties were controlled by the wealthy elites who usually only promoted candidates who were well qualified.

I predict that the increasingly complex problems we face will be handled by completely incompetent leaders and voter confidence in democracy will dwindle ushering in an age of dictators like Putin. Russia is an example of a nation where people have lost faith in democracy.

Should there be some educational or training requirements for elected offices?

Trump is proof that a good education isn’t any guarantee of informed or even competent governance.
 

Neomalthusian

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Economics is closer to mathematics than social sciences. It's an analysis of complex systems using mathematical models.

And yet it's a social science.

Nicolas Maduro was a bus driver. It doesn't matter if his political ideology is conservative or liberal or Marxist if he isn't competent.

I think political ideology does matter. If you have a Marxist bus driver vs. a Marxist ideologue with a Masters or PhD, how is the latter going to be good at Marxism in ways the bus driver won't? Is there some sort of academic instruction as to how to implement Marxism successfully?

It seems your view is simplistic. The problems with Venezuela are Marxism. Real world problems are far more complex and multi-faceted. And it seems obvious that for an oil-rich country like Venezuela the most important factor is proper management of resources. You have to make provisions for oil price fluctuations.

How does an educated Marxist populist do that?

Any country left or right can borrow more than it can afford to pay. Any country can run out of reserve currencies if not properly managed.

Are you trying to defend Marxism?

Another reason the United States has been successful is that the Fed is independent from the political system. The Fed is mostly run by economists. I guess, according to you, the Fed is run by a bunch of Marxists.

Why would you think I think the Fed is run by Marxists?

You sound as though you would be indifferent if the Fed were run by Marxists (as long as they had economics degrees).
 

Neomalthusian

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I could give a rat's ass what he described himself "as". Steve Bannon describes HIMSELF as a Leninist. It's totally meaningless what an uneducated moron "describes themselves as". I could have a drunken uncle who "describes himself" as a Wall Street expert because he played Monopoly.

You sound kind of defensive about the idea that Venezuela's leaders' Marxist populist philosophies have had something to do with the country's miseries.

Socialism can lead to ruin if applied in a confiscatory and pure fundamentalist manner. Capitalism can lead to ruin for the same reasons.
Purity and fundamentalism spring from the decay of critical thought and reason. Economic systems are set up for human beings, which is why they are described as social sciences, therefore in order for them to be sustainable, they must SERVE the largest number of human beings.

The VZ brand of socialism is an absolute failure because it failed to serve the largest number of people, it skewed too far to the left, it confiscated people's wealth. It was fundamentalist and purist and, most of all, managed like a dumpster fire by uneducated people.

Well I'm not going to take issue with those points.
 

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You sound kind of defensive about the idea that Venezuela's leaders' Marxist populist philosophies have had something to do with the country's miseries.

Defensive, eh? I guess that would get kinda "canceled out" by my later comments, then.
I know it is important for you to believe that I am defending Marxism, because it probably ties in with your overall belief that all Democrats or liberals are secretly Marxist True Believers.

But were you willing to take a rational view of my statement, you'd understand that while I acknowledged that going full tilt on unfettered Marxism certainly was the cause of VZ's collapse, I merely added that uneducated fools like Chavez or Maduro would have likely managed to screw it up no matter what VZ's economic underpinnings were.

No Neo-Mal, I wasn't "defensive". I do not subscribe to Marxism, hard as it might be for you to believe. So I also wasn't defending either Chavez or Maduro, or "bolivarian socialism".

Furthermore, anybody who studied Chavez's personality and leadership style would also point to his mountainous ego.
Chavez was yet one more autocrat and demagogue who saw himself as the sole source of Venezuela's very means of existence. He carried himself like a god walking the earth, he dismissed advice from almost everyone and he had little or no intellectual curiosity. He would not take any form of correction, he dispatched anyone who did not agree with his beliefs one hundred percent and he based his entire personal philosophy on loyalty and little else.

That should sound awfully familiar.
It should give most Americans pause.
 

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See, that's not an intelligent answer. The definition of socialism is not mismanagement. That's just immature namecalling. By the way, I'm not a socialist or a follower of Marx.

Venezuela has enormous oil reserves that could have been better managed. Do you deny that any country can run enormous deficits regardless of ideology? Our most conservative presidents have led us to our biggest deficits.

Please explain where socialism requires you to spend more than your oil production revenue during times of high oil prices? Explain to me where socialism requires you not to plan for price fluctuations?

This is a case of mismanagement by Chavez followed by Maduro's inability to deal with a macroeconomic problem like hyperinflation.

I totally agree that they overspent on social programs but I don't think socialism requires you to spend more than you have. That's just mismanagement.

Managed how? Socialism manages industry different than how capitalism manages industry. It has different standards and different understandings of how economies effectively function. The complaint here is that the socialists of Venezula did not do a better job managing their socialist society according to capitalist standards.
 

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Managed how? Socialism manages industry different than how capitalism manages industry. It has different standards and different understandings of how economies effectively function. The complaint here is that the socialists of Venezula did not do a better job managing their socialist society according to capitalist standards.

Socialism is very much like a Social Disease. The way you acquire it sounds absolutely wonderful, but nobody wants to actually live with the consequences of it.

Socialism can and will never work. And every time some new country decides to give that failed social experiment a try, there are always those that claim that it will be done right this time. And Venezuela is no different. You had a lot of people cheering them on, even as some like me were commenting on how the people were having their rights stripped away, saying that it had to be done for Socialism to work.

Over a decade ago I was on a different forum, when Hugo shut down all other media outlets in Venezuela. I told many that I found that disturbing, and that it was against even their Constitution. But most of the posters were Far-Left (hell, some were outright Marxists and proudly admitted it) and said that it was right to close them.

Why? Because they had been critical of the Chavez Government. Yea, I wonder how they would feel if President Trump did the same thing, and if their justifications would work when used back against them.

USSR, Cuba, North Korea, Venezuela, one thing all of those countries have had is devastating famines. And not caused by "climate change", or disaster. All caused by the failures of the government in charge. Yet people insist we try it over and over again, because eventually somebody will get it right.

And if that is not the definition of Insanity, I have no idea what is.
 

SonOfDaedalus

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And yet it's a social science.

That's just a meaningless category. What is your point? Are you implying that economics is "easier" than mathematics and engineering? Is the math behind the Nash Equilibrium which won the nobel prize in economics easy for you to understand? I'm not sure what your point is.


I think political ideology does matter. If you have a Marxist bus driver vs. a Marxist ideologue with a Masters or PhD, how is the latter going to be good at Marxism in ways the bus driver won't? Is there some sort of academic instruction as to how to implement Marxism successfully?

That's like me saying it makes no difference whether a capitalist nation is run by a capitalist bus driver vs a capitalist ideologue with a Masters or Ph.D. I hope you realize how absurd that is. There are basic management decisions that must be made regarding deficits and currency that have nothing to do with your ideology.


How does an educated Marxist populist do that?

The same way they do it in Cuba? Why isn't Cuba suffering from the same hyperinflation if Marxism is the cause? Cuba is simply a better managed economy. Again, I'm not praising Cuba or Marxism. I'm saying that regardless of your ideology you need competent leaders not celebrities and bus drivers.

Why would you think I think the Fed is run by Marxists?

I don't. You're the one who claimed that economics was a social science and implied that economists were mostly Marxists. Read what you said.

You sound as though you would be indifferent if the Fed were run by Marxists (as long as they had economics degrees).

Wrong. I prefer pragmatic economists who aren't rigidly attached to a single ideology.
 

SonOfDaedalus

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Socialism is very much like a Social Disease.

This thread is not about socialism. It's about mismanagement by poorly educated leaders elected through democratic elections.

If you define socialism as state ownership of all the means of production then I agree that socialism doesn't work. But most conservatives don't have any concrete definition of socialism that distinguishes between capitalist welfare state and a fully state centralized managed economy.

If Venezuela had looked at Norway (another oil rich country) and followed that example things would be much better. Norway invests most of it's oil profits in a giant sovereign fund that is collectively owned by all its citizens. That's definitely a more intelligent approach to collective ownership.

Don't you agreee that Norway is an example of great government management of collectively owned oil resources?

 
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