Robert Wenzel, Editor & Publisher
By, Chris Rossini
Saturday, January 12, 2013
Hugo Chavez, who set out to transcend capitalism with his “Bolivarian Revolution,” has instead descended Venezuelans into empty shelves.
A Bloomberg headline reads:
Food Shortages in Venezuela Bigger Worry Than Constitution
First of all, every libertarian needs to memorize the following: Whenever you hear of widespread “shortages,” what’s the first question you should ask?
Answer: “At what price?”
In other words, the government is most likely trying to overpower the market with price controls. They’re gonna tell merchants what price is allowed to be charged, and you better listen, or a goon with a badge will come after you.
Venezuela is another textbook case.
Here’s Bloomberg again (my emphasis):
At a bustling food market in downtown Caracas, armed officers belonging to President Hugo Chavez’s National Bolivarian Guard marched by boxes of lettuce and tomatoes, checking prices and storage rooms.
The inspection is part of a nationwide campaign to crack down on over-pricing and hoarding the government blames for shortages of basic goods, from toilet paper to sugar.
“This is the worst it’s ever been, I can’t find any eggs, rice or flour,” Noreli de Acosta, a 55-year-old housewife said walking out of the Quinta Crespo market in central Caracas, clutching a small bag with assorted vegetables and beans. “Of course the government is to blame.”