Venezuela’s Government revolutionary salaries

February 17, 2005

You know, it used to be that Hugo Chavez would say that PDVSA workers were over privileged, they made so much more than the average Venezuelan. Well, it is now six years of the Chavez Government and:


–I find out the President of the Venezuelan Supreme Court just retired with a monthly salary of US$ 10,000 adjusted anytime the Courtís salaries are adjusted.


 


–And former Vice-Minister of Finance Bermudez tells a US Court that he made US$ 146.666 in 2002, which I thought not even Chavez made that much.


 


–And from PDVSAís budget I discover that the average PDVSA worker makes today US$39,000 a year, versus US$ 30,000 before the strike.


 


All of this despite the fact that the currency has devalued from Bs. 700 per US$ to 1920 per US$ in the last three years.


 


Thus, I have to wonder, poverty is up but the salaries of the privileged Government workers are up significantly in real terms since Chavez got to power. Something is wrong with this picture, no?


 


I still remember, the former Head of the budget office Guiacaipuro Lameda in 1999 (he later became head of PDVSA) talking about the fact that he was bothered by the fact that he was making Bs. 2 million a month as  a General and Head of OCEPRE, while so many people went hungry in Venezuela. He said every time that he had to make a budget decision he thought about this dichotomy and how unfair it was as a way of deciding on the issue. I understood exactly what he meant. Why did Chavez drop people like Lameda from his side?

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