Just fscking great - from, New Orleans station WDSU:
Venezuela's new decree: Forced farm work for citizens
A new decree by Venezuela's government could make its citizens work on farms to tackle the country's severe food shortages.
That "effectively amounts to forced labor," according to Amnesty International, which derided the decree as "unlawful."
In a vaguely-worded decree, Venezuelan officials indicated that public and private sector employees could be forced to work in the country's fields for at least 60-day periods, which may be extended "if circumstances merit."
"Trying to tackle Venezuela's severe food shortages by forcing people to work the fields is like trying to fix a broken leg with a band aid," Erika Guevara Rosas, Americas' Director at Amnesty International, said in a statement.
President Nicolas Maduro is using his executive powers to declare a state of economic emergency. By using a decree, he can legally circumvent Venezuela's opposition-led National Assembly -- the Congress -- which is staunchly against all of Maduro's actions.
A bit more:
It is a potent sign of tough conditions in Venezuela, which is grappling with the lack of basic food items like milk, eggs and bread. People wait hours in lines outsides supermarkets to buy groceries and often only see empty shelves.
And Beer and Toilet Paper - more:
Venezuela once had a robust agricultural sector. But under its socialist regime, which began with Hugo Chavez in 1999, the oil-rich country started importing more food and invested less in agriculture. Nearly all of Venezuela's revenue from exports comes from oil.
Segue back to 1958 - from Rutgers University:
Mao and The Great Leap Forward
The death toll amassed by Mao and his regime range from forty- to seventy-million, eclipsing the Jewish victims of Hitler’s Holocaust by a factor of six to eleven times. Nine years after seizing power, Mao instituted “The Great Leap Forward,” a socioeconomic plan designed to transform China’s agrarian socioeconomic culture towards an industrialized one. The program, which was grounded upon the Marxian prescription for the advancement of industrial technology, yielded the deaths of twenty to forty-three million.
Riding the coattails of the successful collectivization of 1955-1956 and the plentiful harvest of 1957, Mao announced a five-year plan (i.e., The Great Leap Forward) to the People’s Commune in 1958. Mao continually increased the agricultural production quotas due to early bountiful yield of crops. Whereas the early bounties were produced by sound pre-Maoist agricultural methods, the farming methods imposed by Mao, which included natural collectivization— growing incompatible seeds together—, were an unmitigated disaster that led to mass starvation. The five-year program, which only lasted three years, ended in utter catastrophe, inducing a famine that produced an estimated twenty to forty-three million deaths. This manmade famine was a result of Chairman Mao and his commissars implementing policies based on their ignorant notions of farm production. Mao was under the false impression that nature could be run in a non-symbiotic fashion. Indeed, Mao once quipped that “Happy plants grow together.” It was this utopian naivety that grounded Mao’s five-year project, and the manmade famine that followed.
TL;DR? Socialism has never worked successfully. It cannot balance the budget. The only times people have been able to point to a successful socialist government is when there have been initial large surpluses in resources and budget. Once those are drained to pay for Bread and Circuses, everything falls apart. Except for the elite - they will always prosper because they know what is best for The People.
Meanwhile our National Debt is just under $20 trillion dollars. It was $10.6 Trillion when he took office eight years ago. Double.