Talking to friends in the US, it is not easy to explain 11 years of Hugo Chavez in a short conversation. There are basically three questions that everyone asks or perhaps that no answer can satisfy their curiosity:
-How did Venezuelans let this happen?
-How could the system allow it to happen?
-How can Chavez allow inefficiencies and doesn’t he see the numbers that show his policies fail?
I try to answer these as briefly as possible, but it’s not easy. The last question is the hardest to answer. How can anyone understand the nationalizations that have made state companies worse? How can anyone explain that such things as revenue and profits or numbers are irrelenat to Chavez? To Americans who live by these questions, it is really difficult to understand how these questions are irrelevant to the Venezuelan populist.
To many, there seems to be a disconnect between Chavez the populist who cares about the people and Chavez the administrator who allows food to rot, oil production to drop and inefficiency to run rampant.
It is indeed a paradox that Chavez the micromanager of his popularity, tcould care less about any other numbers.
And that may be his down fall in the end.
And I keep explaining…
P.S. There are still places in the world where there is no cell phone connection or Wi Fi…priceless