With public interest in socialism rising in the United States, there has come a renewed effort to cast any and all forms of socialism as inevitable disasters, and to use whichever example is conveniently to hand to demonstrate this “fact”. Venezuela is the current go-to for the defenders of capitalism, so it’s worth spreading awareness of some of the factors that got that country to where they are today. Wolff, as usual, does a good job covering the facts of the situation:
In particular, it’s worth considering the role played by oil and other fossil fuels, not just in the economy of Venezuela, but in those of countries around the world. If we’re going to take a realistic approach to dealing with the threat of climate change, it is essential that we not only work to end our use of fossil fuels, but that we also work to help those countries who depend on the fossil fuel economy make that transition with as little pain as possible. They need to survive the coming changes just as much as the rest of us do, and it’s likely that without a global effort that accounts for the needs of those currently relying on coal, gas, and oil, the transition will be far harder than it needs to be, and those countries will suffer far more than they need to. We need to be doing everything at once.
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