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A letter to a Venezuelan academic

Dear colleague, This is an uncomfortable letter to write. In the past few weeks we have come to the stark realization that our government is bankrupt. Not just morally bankrupt, we knew that, but pelando cable bankrupt – so bankrupt that the debate on economic policy right now is on whether the fiscal deficit is closer to…

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More than Unmet Basic Needs

A tragedy occurred a few days ago in Barinas. Six children died in a fire. The fire was triggered by a short circuit after a service interruption. Typically, after a service interruption voltage surges, which in turn can cause cable insulation to melt and short circuit. One must ask then, did we do a disservice to provide…

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Fahrenheit 058

Over at Foreign Policy’s Transitions blog, I try and explain just why Venezuelan parents are incensed. The value added: In order to “promote participatory democracy,” the resolution states that all decisions in every school — public or private — must involve parents, teachers, students, workers, and even “the community,” represented by “communal councils.” Including communal councils in…

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When in Rome…

A few days ago, Maduro was having a down in the dumps day, he needed a quick pick me up, something empowering, something to assert his manhood. So, he did what any self respecting male  would do, he made a rape joke, gorillas included. Yes, a rape joke on Cadena Nacional. In our little machista…

An opposition demonstrators holds a Venezuelan flag in front of a burning barricade in Caracas

Taming the shadow

These tumultuous days, as I was glued to Twitter, reading Facebook comments, listening to opinions on the street, and watching the students debate on CNNE, I  finally “understood” Venezuela’s deep polarization. After 15 years of war speech, we have become two distinct countries, two societies that haven’t been able to reconcile in more than a…

Chavismo discovers youth unemployment

Youth Minister Héctor Rodríguez recently admitted in an interview that there’s at least one million young Venezuelans who’re neither studying or working right now. Congratulations, you just found out what a NEET is. The more you know… The problem of youth unemployment in Venezuela was already recognized by both the National Statistics Institute (INE) and…