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Samizdata quote of the day

“It turns out Lenin was wrong. Debauching the currency is actually the best way to destroy the socialist, not the capitalist, system.”

Matt O’Brien, from the Washington Post. (The fact that such a comment can be made in a liberal-leaning publication such as the Post is interesting in itself.) Via Business Insider. He is talking about the disaster that is Venezuela.

19 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Paul Marks

    The trouble is that most of the young think that what we have now (the economy whose Capital Structure has been utterly debauched) is “capitalism”.

    Yes Venezuela is an inflation mess.

    But the West is a asset price bubble mess.

    And when the property bubble (and so on) finally goes – the young will blame “the capitalists” and demand more statism.

    Unless the case is convincingly made (and made no) that what is going on in via “Wall Street” and “The City” and so on (i.e. vast government backed lending that is not from Real Savings – the actual sacrifice of consumption) is NOT capitalism.

  • Mr Ed

    The purpose of the inflation is:

    1. Statism for its own sake, and a bit of looting.
    2. To destroy the status and power of the bourgeois middle class (not the government middle class, who might be collateral damage) by consequential devaluation of money and expropriation
    3. To create an air of crisis, with bogeymen to blame.
    4. To make opposition exhausting and difficult. How do you organise against a government when you have to worry about having toilet paper or other basics of life?

    Then you impose exchange controls and foreign currency restrictions, so that no one can leave legally, at least with any assets, and your economy resembles a shrinking lake as the dry season wears on, but one with no lung fish waiting to aestivate.

    The USA is far more subtle, the Fed’s asset bubbles make it all seem like a fun and prosperous season.

  • It seems to me that the Venezuelan socialists got things in the wrong order. Before they totally wrecked the economy, they should have shut down democracy. You can’t ruin the economy, then let the people vote you out of power, and expect to remain in power. They should have concentrated on changing the system of government first to make themselves politically untouchable, and got all that done before the economy collapsed. But I guess they got greedy. Or, they really thought they were improving matters for almost everyone. Or, most likely, both.

  • Regional

    This rant against the Left is hilarious.
    They’ve fucked themselves.

  • Runcie Balspune

    @Brian, well, they had a good stab at shutting down democracy, but then found out you can’t vote for dead people.

  • Mr Ed

    you can’t vote for dead people

    I distinctly remember an election in the USA where a dead man, Mel Carnahan, won the Senate contest.

    And in North Korea, if you stretch the term ‘vote’ a bit, Kim Il-Sung is Eternal President, over 2 decades after his death. True socialism, true ‘style’.

    There’s nothing socialists can’t fix, be it elections or opinion, except the problems like how to make enough bread, and how to be lead a decent life.

  • Cristina

    To understand Venezuela, we need to bring back to the picture the figure of El Caudillo. Chavez was a typical caudillo. Only death could dislodge him from power. The current figurehead is a mere epigone of Chavez. Hence, the lost of power in the last parliamentary elections.

  • Paul Marks

    Brian – they did try to get rid of democracy.

    Control of the media (and education system) to brainwash people.

    Leftist courts and so on.

    A bit like Britain and America.

    And ballot rigging – rather like “Hillary”.

    But (again rather like “Hillary”) they are not very good at ballot rigging.

    As any Irishman will tell you – ballot rigging is a real skill.

    One can not just throw in a few votes here, and burn a few votes there – to use a word the socialists are fond of one must have a “plan” and the actual SKILL and HARD WORK to carry out one’s plans.

    “Skill” and “hard work” are not words that one can really associate with the leftists of Venezuela.

    But they have rigged things so that he Opposition do not have a two thirds majority of the Congress – even thought he opposition got the votes.

    And the Supreme Court in Venezuela is awarding new powers to the President all the time.

    Barack Obama (who does not totally control the United States Supreme Court – it, from time to time, does limit him) must be filled with envy.

    “Just one more bleeping vote on the Supreme Court and I could rule by decree as the President of Venezuela does” is what he (and Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders) are thinking.

    Soon Supreme Court judges in the United States will be retiring – which means that 2017 (assuming the left win in November 2016) may be the year that the United States becomes Venezuela.

    The young love the idea – ask they what they think of socialism.

    As the education system and the media (including all those far left cartoons on Fox) would be unsurprised to learn – the young LOVE socialism.

    Just as the young HATE such things as Freedom of Speech.

    Freedom of Speech is RACIST – ask the elite Ivy League students.

    Plato would be so proud of these young orcs.

    Sorry ELITE young orcs.

    After all they (the elite students) will still have toilet paper – whilst no one else has it.

    Indeed the toilet paper may even be parchment made from human skin.

    Ordinary people in the United States are already killing themselves in despair (check the rise of suicides and the rise of opiate abuse).

    Although ordinary people (if they did but know it) still have the chance to turn things round – to roll back the “Progress” towards totalitarianism and the collapse of civilization.

    But NOT by supporting Donald Trump.

    He is the part of the problem – not part of the solution.

    Donald Trump is a very Latin American type politician – a Caudillo type.

    The sort of Social Justice ruler who promises people everything they want (to be paid for by magic).

    Critina knows the type.

  • Cristina

    “Critina knows the type”
    Yes, I do.
    The caudillo is feared, not liked.
    Trump is liked. He’s feared only by the elite.
    I still believe the next president will be Clinton, but not because of Trump.

  • Trump is feared by anyone who thinks overtly mainstreaming crony “capitalism” and accepting the GOP as a pro-Kelo anti-property rights party is a good thing.

  • Julie near Chicago

    What Perry said.

    And I for one dislike Trump. Perhaps there’s a decent man in there, but if so he doesn’t get out much.

  • Cristina

    “Trump is feared by anyone who thinks overtly mainstreaming crony “capitalism” and accepting the GOP as a pro-Kelo anti-property rights party is a good thing.”

    How many of them vote, do you think?

    “And I for one dislike Trump. Perhaps there’s a decent man in there, but if so he doesn’t get out much”

    How many voters are just like you, do you think?

  • Nicholas (Excentrality!) Gray

    If Trump tromps everyone else, what sort of President would he make? Would he, at the end of his term, try to sell the White House? How much might he get for it?

  • Julie near Chicago

    Cristina, as to the first: Agree with Perry, and I hope there are Enough. I surely do.

    As to the second: I hope there are Enough. I surely do.

    Neither of which answers your question, of course. Alas, my crystal ball is down at the shop having its cracks repaired….

    . . .

    Nicholas, according to Trump, if the Congress won’t do his bidding on this or that, he’s going to call them all into the Oval Office and play Let’s Make a Deal. This is Trump the Great Negotiator. Are his Deals going to involve compromising the Constitution? There’s this question whether he’s ever read the thing.

    So the question becomes whether there are enough conservatives or Constitutionalists in the House and the Senate respectively who will stand fast on his unConstitutional initiatives. Like forbidding/prohibiting/punishing “outsourcing” or relocating a business abroad (even Burger King to Canada). Doesn’t actually matter which party they run with, although there may be a few of them in the GOP — depending on the issue of course.

    I don’t think Shrill will let him sell the White House. She put dibs on doing that herself, back when her hubby was Prexy. :>(

  • Nicholas (Excentrality!) Gray

    The only people who should be able to complain about politicians not reading the U.S. Constitution are those who have done so. Who amongst us has read the whole thing? Not me! How about you?

  • Laird

    Nicholas, I have read it through countless times, and studied it thoroughly. I’ve also read much of the Federalist Papers. Does that satisfy you?

  • Nicholas (Excentrality!) Gray

    Then you are certainly qualified to tell us about Trump’s knowledge! Does he know much at all? Is he pretending to know nothing so as to appear average?
    The public wants to know!

  • Cristina

    “Alas, my crystal ball is down at the shop having its cracks repaired….” Pity! 🙂

  • Julie near Chicago

    Yes, Cristina, I’m afraid it was badly crazed as a result of the 2008 election. 🙁