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how do you feel right now? - miamizsun - Aug 14, 2017 - 1:55pm
 
Science benefitting us old codgers - Proclivities - Aug 14, 2017 - 11:11am
 
What did you have for lunch? - aflanigan - Aug 14, 2017 - 10:44am
 
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Index » Regional/Local » Latin America » Venezuela Page: 1, 2, 3 ... 10, 11, 12  Next
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buddy

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Posted: Aug 11, 2017 - 8:44pm

 R_P wrote: 
Kind of a pallet cleanser I suppose...
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Posted: Aug 11, 2017 - 7:08pm

Trump threatens Venezuela's Nicolas Maduro with military action
westslope

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Posted: Aug 11, 2017 - 8:33am

 R_P wrote: 
John Wight should stick to writing novels.  
Or provide some evidence of similar systems to Venezuela that have prospered.  (There are none.)  

At least Neo-Marxists and Trump supporters share something in common:  a deep disdain for evidence-based policy. 
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Posted: Aug 5, 2017 - 12:23pm

Venezuela Crisis: the US Wants “Its” Country Back
westslope

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Location: BC desert


Posted: Aug 5, 2017 - 11:12am

 Red_Dragon wrote:

Socialism, capitalism, communism, etc.

isms suck

What we need is a society/economy/system - whatever you want to call it - that isn't based on people out-producing each other. Fuck competition, we should be beyond that by now. We need something that provides essentials for everyone and a plan for leaving this planet and spreading ourselves into the universe.

Otherwise, we - and the planet (or at least a lot of the life on this planet) are fucked.

 
You mean Populism sucks?  Ignoranc-ism sucks?  Lazyiness and indifference suck? 

Personally I think the pill-popping, lazy narcissistic position politics adopted by so many sucks.  Who cares about outcomes and 'other people' (especially those in poor developing countries)?  What matters is how your peers view you.

Note that 'American exceptionalism' is an indirect way of saying that American voters ignore American experts while other rich western country voters pay attention to American experts.  

Some of the countries with the best social-economic outcomes are the Nordic societies.  They have free market capitalism and do it very well.  That Red_Dragon means 'competition'.  

So what do your propose in its place Red_Dragon?   Totalitarian socialism?   Some updated modern version of feudalism?    

Please note that rich western countries have created the biggest spaces for sub-cultures and counter-cultures of all the various political economic systems throughout history.  Cooperative movements and anti-material sub-cultures have thrived in rich western countries with freemarket capitalism.
 
Don't extrapolate from the current American experience to the rest of the world. The USA has pushed Celebrity Narcissism to heights that are rarely found in other countries.  President Trump espouses a rather primitive version of zero-sum capitalism.  

In the post-war period, rich capitalist countries have stopped using violence to appropriate resources, EXCEPT Israel and the USA. 
 
Incidentally, a number of Latin American countries are doing quite nicely thank you very much.  Maybe it is time to spend some effort in learning why the Neo-Marxist populist experiments have been such disasters in Latin America and Africa.  Instead of listening to the nonsense from so-called progressive pundits like Naomi Klein.  


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Posted: Aug 3, 2017 - 5:22pm

 westslope wrote:
Op-Ed Remember all those left-wing pundits who drooled over Venezuela?

Pasted except:

Thanks to Chavismo’s vast social welfare schemes (initially buoyed by high oil prices), cronyism and corruption, a country that once boasted massive budget surpluses is today the world’s most indebted. Contraction in per capita GDP is so severe that “Venezuela’s economic catastrophe dwarfs any in the history of the U.S., Western Europe or the rest of Latin America” according to Ricardo Hausmann, former chief economist of the Inter-American Development Bank. Transparency International lists Venezuela as the only country in the Americas among the world’s 10 most corrupt.

 
Socialism, capitalism, communism, etc.

isms suck

What we need is a society/economy/system - whatever you want to call it - that isn't based on people out-producing each other. Fuck competition, we should be beyond that by now. We need something that provides essentials for everyone and a plan for leaving this planet and spreading ourselves into the universe.

Otherwise, we - and the planet (or at least a lot of the life on this planet) are fucked.
westslope

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Posted: Aug 3, 2017 - 5:01pm

Op-Ed Remember all those left-wing pundits who drooled over Venezuela?

Pasted except:

Thanks to Chavismo’s vast social welfare schemes (initially buoyed by high oil prices), cronyism and corruption, a country that once boasted massive budget surpluses is today the world’s most indebted. Contraction in per capita GDP is so severe that “Venezuela’s economic catastrophe dwarfs any in the history of the U.S., Western Europe or the rest of Latin America” according to Ricardo Hausmann, former chief economist of the Inter-American Development Bank. Transparency International lists Venezuela as the only country in the Americas among the world’s 10 most corrupt.
westslope

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Posted: Jun 14, 2017 - 7:43am

If the opposition to the Maduro regime were non-violent and disciplined, this crisis would be over much faster and with fewer casualties and wounded.

The political violence might be 'righteous', it is simply not cost effective.
westslope

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Posted: Mar 22, 2017 - 2:43pm

 Skydog wrote:
everything was fine when oil was 120 bucks per barrel
one could blame the American oil producers for being so good at what they do they drove the price down to 40 bucks a barrel
and the American ecology movement for mandating autos and other fuel burning machinery to be more effecient and the drop in demand causing, again, 40 bucks a barrel
the Soviet Union and countries like Venezeula give socialism a bad name because of their short sightedness (i.e. stupidness)

 
Everything was not fine when oil prices were high.  Thanks to subsidies, you could apparently fill up a Ford Explorer for the equivalent US$0.80.   Great stuff for those who believe in socialism for the rich.

Then there were all kinds other market distortions such as food subsidies.  I cannot think of one good single reason to subsidize food. 

Venezuela had already booted out lots of talent from the PDVSA the state-owned oil company.  Foreign-owned oil companies and service companies were often not paid.   Production was already stagnating if not declining when oil prices were high. 

Neo-Marxist guided populism has always produced nasty, incompetent, myopic regimes, Venezuela being the worst of the lot.  

Even the state socialism regimes of yesteryear had in relative terms better outcomes than Venezuela for example.   
Lazy8
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Posted: Feb 21, 2017 - 11:54am

Skydog wrote:
everything was fine when oil was 120 bucks per barrel

No. No, it wasn't.

The immense concentration of power implicit in socialism gave rise to the same despotism it always has, and with it came the cronyism, corruption, and human misery that always follows. This was obvious to anyone paying attention from the beginning of the Chavez regime. There were an awful lot of people who wanted this pointless repetition of the socialist experiment to succeed—this time, unlike all the others—so badly that they did their best not to pay attention, but reality can't be ignored forever.

one could blame the American oil producers for being so good at what they do they drove the price down to 40 bucks a barrel
and the American ecology movement for mandating autos and other fuel burning machinery to be more effecient and the drop in demand causing, again, 40 bucks a barrel
the Soviet Union and countries like Venezeula give socialism a bad name because of their short sightedness (i.e. stupidness)

One could. One probably is, right now, and every time we repeat this experiment there is always some defect in the experimenters that is to blame, not the premise.

Any political philosophy will be executed by humans. Real humans in the real world, not theoretical models. If every single time it's tried it fails it's time to stop blaming the flaws in humans and blame the flaws in the theory. If the plan isn't robust enough to survive contact with reality you don't get to try again with a different reality.
Skydog

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Posted: Feb 21, 2017 - 10:53am

everything was fine when oil was 120 bucks per barrel
one could blame the American oil producers for being so good at what they do they drove the price down to 40 bucks a barrel
and the American ecology movement for mandating autos and other fuel burning machinery to be more effecient and the drop in demand causing, again, 40 bucks a barrel
the Soviet Union and countries like Venezeula give socialism a bad name because of their short sightedness (i.e. stupidness)


westslope

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Posted: Feb 21, 2017 - 10:44am

I am not sure what 'forced socialism' is.....  

The Neo-Marxist guided authoritarian populist governments throughout Latin America and Africa have all been failures by just about any yard stick you can imagine..  Venezuela is the most recent, and the most spectacular.   The majority of Venezuelans have nobody to blame but themselves.  
 
The insight on these issues comes from asking why the Nordic social democracies are so spectacularly successful  — logging far better results on average than the American socialist system — while communism (state socialism) and Neo-Marxist guided authoritarian populist systems have been such failures.   


miamizsun

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Posted: Feb 21, 2017 - 10:11am

this is going in the wrong direction

state socialism (forced socialism) isn't working for the vast majority of people

Meanwhile, 74.3 percent of the population lost an average of 8.7 kilos of weight, or 19 pounds, and around 9.6 million Venezuelans eat two or fewer meals a day. 
People stand in line as they wait to buy staple items and basic food outside of a supermarket in El Paraiso neighborhood in Caracas, Venezuela September 9, 2016.
Henry Romero | Reuters
People stand in line as they wait to buy staple items and basic food outside of a supermarket in El Paraiso neighborhood in Caracas, Venezuela September 9, 2016.

People walk at the refrigerated foods section inside a Makro supermarket in Caracas, Venezuela.
Jorge Silva | Reuters
People walk at the refrigerated foods section inside a Makro supermarket in Caracas, Venezuela.
 

westslope

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Posted: Jun 23, 2016 - 9:05am

 aflanigan wrote:

We're not perfect at the actual or "hard" sciences, but at least they are true sciences. I'm pretty much in the camp that believes economics, the so-called "dismal" science, isn't really a science. It aspires to be a discipline, but it's not very good at that, either.
Maybe it's a question of getting the people who are truly good at science in the economic realm (formulating and testing hypotheses) to take the lead in terms of setting the agenda in the field, bu how do we  minimize the impact of politics and money on the field? Not even hard sciences are completely immune from such influences.

 
"True science" is not very helpful.   

Economics is a policy science.  So positive economics comes very close to what we typically think of a scientific approach to understanding the world.  Normative economics implies value judgements and inevitably leads to statements of what 'ought to be'.

Science is a process and a collection of agreed upon methods to obtain knowledge.  It does not require ideal circumstances of tightly controlled laboratory experiments. 

Science is not 'common sense'.  Common sense might generate questions but that is the limit of the connection.

Much of the so-called hard sciences work in environments where experiments cannot be controlled or controls are sufficiently poor that statistical methods are required for empirical verification.  In my experience, a lot of so-called scientists use a black box approach to statistical modelling and hypothesis testing.  Yet, they have the temerity to tell others what is science and what is not.  It is rather funny.....

The Neo-Marxist guided authoritarian regimes like Venezuela as well as Argentina, Ecuador, Bolivia, Zimbabwe and the Republic of South Africa are inevitably populist and often implement policies that are the opposite of what technocratic experts would recommend.  That is in part why they have logged even poorer results than their communist equivalents of yesteryear.   


Skydog

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Posted: May 19, 2016 - 9:47am

 Prodigal_SOB wrote:



 
another good source is NPR, the most often spoken words on Public Radio are, "in a recent study"


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Posted: May 19, 2016 - 9:37am

 aflanigan wrote:

We're not perfect at the actual or "hard" sciences, but at least they are true sciences. I'm pretty much in the camp that believes economics, the so-called "dismal" science, isn't really a science. It aspires to be a discipline, but it's not very good at that, either.
Maybe it's a question of getting the people who are truly good at science in the economic realm (formulating and testing hypotheses) to take the lead in terms of setting the agenda in the field, bu how do we  minimize the impact of politics and money on the field? Not even hard sciences are completely immune from such influences.

 

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Posted: May 19, 2016 - 6:58am

 miamizsun wrote:

we're good at the physical sciences, coming on strong (digitizing) the biological sciences, but we're totally stuck in the social arena (human action sciences) by political dogma

peace


 
We're not perfect at the actual or "hard" sciences, but at least they are true sciences. I'm pretty much in the camp that believes economics, the so-called "dismal" science, isn't really a science. It aspires to be a discipline, but it's not very good at that, either.
Maybe it's a question of getting the people who are truly good at science in the economic realm (formulating and testing hypotheses) to take the lead in terms of setting the agenda in the field, bu how do we  minimize the impact of politics and money on the field? Not even hard sciences are completely immune from such influences.
Skydog

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Posted: May 19, 2016 - 6:03am

 miamizsun wrote:


we're good at the physical sciences, coming on strong (digitizing) the biological sciences, but we're totally stuck in the social arena (human action sciences) by political dogma

 
yep,  culture cannot be changed via legislature, 
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Posted: May 19, 2016 - 4:39am

 R_P wrote:
 miamizsun wrote:
i don't know anyone that is elated over the situation

people are suffering the consequences of exceptionally bad political leadership 

Thank God that doesn't happen anywhere else...

 
 ain't that the truth

seriously the huge problem is that social science (probably more accurate to call it human action science) has been stifled/stopped dead in its tracks by top down force

it's one size fits all and the framework is rife with corruption

practically impossible to experiment/evolve

we're good at the physical sciences, coming on strong (digitizing) the biological sciences, but we're totally stuck in the social arena (human action sciences) by political dogma

peace



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Posted: May 18, 2016 - 4:25pm

 Lazy8 wrote:
(...) I did put Bernie Sanders in the socialist camp...because he does himself. He intentionally blurs the lines between social democracy and socialism because the former hasn't proved to be the train wreck that the latter has, but he has said over and over that he is comfortable with the label "socialist" and I'm taking him at his word.
 
Yes, but a democratic socialist. And other types of socialists (yes, they are not all the same) will be quick to point out that he's more of a social democrat than a democratic socialist. And they're not alone.

You taking a "socialist" at their word should be cause for grave concern.
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