It is preposterous to claim Venezuela’s demise is due to oil prices, as Michael Plaisted argued in his Wednesday letter to the editor discussing socialism. If that were true, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Algeria and more would have also experienced catastrophic economic destruction. Venezuela is a failed state because centralization of power simply does not work. It runs against how human beings operate and behave. Government command and control is vastly inferior to millions of individual decisions made in the free market.
Mr. Plaisted’s attempt to justify socialism while ignoring its glaring defects and 100 percent failure rate is a denial of reality — the same denial running rampant through Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and many of our friends on the left.
His claims about Europe are also wrong. So-called European democratic socialist countries do not exist. European states were made prosperous by capitalism. They briefly flirted with centralized power but have recanted and are now returning to freer markets. In fact, hundreds of millions of impoverished people across the world have risen above extreme poverty in the past 20 years because of capitalism.
Venezuela has become a dunghole because centralized government always fails. Look at the Soviet Union, East Germany, Cuba, Cambodia, North Korea et al. If we choose socialism, we, too, will become a dunghole nation. This is not to mention the 100 million murders committed in the name of socialism.
Sugarcoating societal death is a dangerous and ignorant act.