Sunday, October 16, 2011

Free gas for the rich

Hint, hint: move to Venezuela
El Universal carries a piece of news which is simply hair raising: the governemt has started delivering gas to service stations and stopped charging for it.  That is right, service stations now get a full truck of gas and do not pay for it.  And what is best, the sales prices of that full truck of gasoline is barely enough to cover their expenses for "selling" that gas to customers.

Wrap your mind around that for a minute...

The point is that after 13 years of chavismo, we have had a currency that went down from around 500 to the USD to around 6,000 to the USD (depending on how you count but even at official rate it is still 4,300).  And yet Chavez said early in his tenure that as long as he is president gas price would not go up.  For once he kept a promise but we wish that this one he would not have kept....

In other words gasoline is 10 times cheaper than it was 12 years ago and yours truly travels in a gas guzzler between San Felipe and Caracas for barely half a tank, or 2.5 BsF.  That is half a dollar for 5 hours on the road.  HALF A DOLLAR FOR 5 HOURS DRIVING!  And even less if we go to the street rate.

In the XXI century socialism this has got to be the biggest scandal of all of them.  It is the biggest single subsidy, one that benefits the most those "rich enough" to afford a car which in Venezuela is a minority in spite of appearances.  Go to any manufacturing business in Venezuela and calculate the ratio of cars parked in the lot and total workers: you will be surprised at how rarely it reaches 20% (in my own there are 30 of us and only 6 own cars).

Imagine for a second what social program could be properly financed if the regime had decided a few years ago to sell gas at cost.  Just at cost, no more.  Calculations vary but we could easily finance anything from the eduction budget to the health one at the expense of what "rich" people like me get as a gas subsidy.  How many hospital equipments or school books did I burn driving to Caracas?

There you have it, the ultimate symbol how how fake the bolibanana revolution is, something that was merely an excuse to have gullible people vote for a regime which transformed the country into a narco-state while reaching summits of demagoguery and corruption.  It is almost too perfect...

How I wish I could read today a history book written in 20 years....


  1. Unbelievable.. so the gas stations have been losing money with frozen prices after 13 years? This goes far beyond glaring ineptitude from all parties involved at every level of the gasoline supply chain. It just stinks of monumental THEFT and corruption, left, right and in between.

  2. sledge

    in fact there is not much corruption associated at this level compared to other corrupt venues. besides "improving" subsidies to certain parties, the government has been losing so much money for the last half a decade that there not much to steal.

    the problem here is sheer ideology, sheer arrogance of chavez which by themselves have created a major problem for the country and an extraordinary waste. not only this is unforgivable but it actually compromises the future of PDSA which could use badly that money for oil exploration, to name one thing.

  3. "There you have it, the ultimate symbol how how fake the bolibanana revolution is, something that was merely an excuse to have gullible people vote for a regime which transformed the country into a narco-state while reaching summits of demagoguery and corruption"


  4. The Gremlin11:13 PM

    For many years I have wondered how do gas stations stay in business. With frozen prices, no matter how cheap they get the gas, eventually they can't cover their costs. How do they pay their employees? Even getting the gas for free.

    I would have thought this should have broken down long ago.

  5. Gremlin

    this has not "broken" becasue many gas station are still privately owned and manage garages and convenience stores on the side. upsetting the regime with their criticism could only lead to a final take over of the gas distribution system by the state, a threat often waved by infamous ramirez.

  6. Lets also remember there is no road tax on the gas thus lousy roads paid for out of the general fund.


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