Today we have got one step close to serious food shortages. Chavez has announced that he might just expropriate Polar and pay them with worthless bonds. And he is expropriating Cargill meanwhile. The Polar thing came just as Polar announced it would go to court. So Chavez, who owns the courts, and as the thug he is, replied by threatening to take it all.
We do not know how deep in those business Chavez will go or whether he will limit himself to the rice mills only (Cargill is a very important provider of diverse food stuff in Venezuela). It really does not matter: the damage done to the private sector, to investment, to public trust, to productivity, and eventually to the Venezuelan shelves, is devastating. We all now that it is only a new step for Chavez, not the first and certainly not the last.
Since I am preparing along post about the 2009 perspective I will not elaborate further on this, but I wanted to make sure you were aware of the fact so as not to say that I exaggerate my words. In Venezuela reality is stranger than fiction.