barbie

Venezuela – a great place for business (if you’re an accountant)

Yesterday was not a good day for businesses operating inside Venezuela. First, the government decided to expropriate significant parts of Polar, Nestle, Coca-Cola, and Pepsi. The government claims the factories and distribution centers, located in Caracas’ working-class district of La Yaguara, were built on land they need for public housing. Never mind that the government is broke…

Aedes_Albopictus-mosquito

Venezuela’s invisible malaria problem

Malaria is endemic to the tropics. Years ago, Venezuela had erradicated the disease, but the country went to hell in a handbasket, so guess what? Malaria came back. And it came back with a vengeance, to the point that in 2013 Venezuela recorded 76,621 cases, the highest tally in the history of the country (well, at…

que-se-vayan-todos

Poll Wars: Middle-class alert

A new poll in Venezuela is showing continued deterioration in Venezuelans’ perceptions of their country, and of President Nicolás Maduro. The Venebarómetro poll, done by respected pollster Ivad in conjunction with Croes, Gutiérrez & Asociados, shows a worsening of the trends for Nicolás Maduro: 84% of Venezuelans think the situation in the country is “bad,” 57% of Venezuelans…

Leopoldo 2002

Leopoldo in depth

This Foreign Policy piece by Roberto Lovato has gotten a bit of pushback because of its less-than-rosy account of the public persona of Leopoldo López. And, in particular, for its cryptochavista fixation with the events of April, 2002. Putting that aside, though, it’s an accomplished, in-depth look at López’s life and career – where he grew up, who his…

Telenovela Adentro

Inside soaps

One of the perks of writing the blog is that I get to meet and interact with interesting people I wouldn’t normally associate with – both in the comments section, and outside of it. Case in point: a few months ago I got the chance to spend some time with Carolina Acosta-Alzuru, a professor of Communication Studies…