Destroying Venezuela, one factory at a time

August 15, 2010

Last week the workers of the refractory brick factory of Ceramica Carabobo held another protest trying to get Chavez’ attention to their plight. These guys continue to be pro-Government, which is remarkable, despite the fact that while Chavez did do what they wanted, it has all been downhill since then.

It all started in April 2009, at a meeting with Chavista union leaders, Chavez bombastically announced the nationalization of a bunch of companies, mostly those that made hot iron briquettes for which the Government provided the iron ore. This was done at the request of the Chavista union. Thrown in the nationalization pot was the refractory brick factory owned by Ceramica Carabobo, which sold most of its product to Sidor.

Jorge Giordani was there with his stupid smile of victory over capitalism that he always exhibits in these events, but this was the last time the workers smiled.

Of the 190 workers of the factory, 60 have resigned by now. Sidor went through the inventory and used up all of the refractory bricks that were there when the Argentineans left. When they ran out, surprise, surprise, they started importing the refractory bricks from Brazil and Argentina.

The happy workers, the nationalizers, stopped getting paid, the factory was shut down. They are still owed money today. The Governor of the State began giving the food so they could survived. The protests started and in December the Minister of basic Industries said he would fix the problem.

Except for a small salary, smaller than the minimum salary, nothing happened, the workers staged protests in March and now are back at it, including threats of a hunger strike.

The factory remains closed. Sidor keeps importing refractory bricks.

The destruction of Venezuela by the Chavez Government continues, one factory at a time.

23 Responses to “Destroying Venezuela, one factory at a time”

  1. j.scott barnard Says:

    Marta Harnaker blames the worker for not knowing every aspect of the production process, a most unrealistic utopian perogative for successful worker ownership:

    “Twenty-first century socialism cannot afford to leave untouched labor processes that alienate workers, and it cannot allow the division between manual labor and intellectual labor to continue. The person who works has to be informed of the whole production process, must be capable of controlling it, and be able to express an opinion on production plans. But are workers prepared to play an active role in managing companies? No, they are not. This is precisely because capitalism has never had any interest in sharing with workers technical knowledge about managing companies. Here, I am referring not only to production related matters but also to those related to marketing and company finance. Concentrating this knowledge in the hands of management has been one of the mechanisms that has allowed capital to exploit workers.

    Therefore, one of the first steps that must be taken if we are to achieve more self-management of companies is to make it possible for workers to obtain that knowledge. To do that, they must be able to educate themselves.” (

    Such a fundamental difference between individualists and socialists, a worker who invests his time in education, acquiring advanced skills, etc… will be upwardly mobile in a capitalist, free enterprise system. In a socialist system, you will remain a cog in the wheel of production, but an educated cog.

    These people will experiment with us to death if allowed.

  2. deananash Says:

    I agree with Jeffreyhouse, and I’ve been saying the same thing – for years. The problem is, NONE of the “opposition” actually want to go out and “help” people. There interest is in power, plain and simple.

    Where is the glory in spending 5 years educating the poor? It’s super tough work – I know, because that’s what I do. It’s basically a thankless job, with, not surprisingly, minimal results.

    So why do I persist? I focus on the kids, because everyone deserves a chance. It’s not their fault that their parents are uneducated, abusive, etc…still, and ultimately, we’re talking about educating people out of one culture and into another. Like I said, a near impossible task.

    Those who I’ve helped, the ones who have escaped poverty (a/k/a ignorance) thank me profusely. But they are just a drop in the ocean. That’s why MORE HELP(ers) are needed. LOTS MORE! And all around the world.

  3. loroferoz Says:

    “If you really want Chavez out, you’ll reach out to those workers, and their fellow wilting Chavistas”

    But these guys needed a practical demonstration right on their own hides.

    How many more practical lessons are needed before Venezuela is out of Chavez, and out of socialism and populism? How generalized and how painful?

    Now, will we change our message? These guys were easy to dupe because all of their lives they have heard, regardless of whether it was present (or past) opposition or present (or past) officialists:

    That socialism could work in other places of the world (where socialism has never been, by the by), that this is a “rich” country and there is some for everybody and if you don’t get some it is stolen from you, that something was due them of the earnings even if they risked nil, that the owner did exploit them (but not the party bosses or the syndicates that assigned jobs), that Fidel was not that bad, that the govt. has to solve their problems whatever they might be, that the 1976 nationalizations were great achievements, etc…

  4. albionboy Says:

    When Ronald Regan talked about introducing the Neutron Bomb, into the European theatre, Communist Russia said it was a Capitalist Bomb, because it killed people but left the buildings standing.

    Now finally Communists have their answer, the Chavez Bomb, destroys all the business but leaves the people standing.

  5. GWEH Says:

    very good comments!

  6. Roberto N Says:

    Exactly, jeffryhouse.

    That is exactly what I am seeing. Reaching out to all but the most fanatic is a win win 9 times out of 10.

    With official stats showing 8 million Venezuelans of working age out of a job, you can bet that many will think twice before rolling the dice.

  7. jeffryhouse Says:

    I consider these workers victims. As with many who are convinced to believe in salvation and heaven-on-earth, they have been disappointed.

    With previous communist regimes, true believers ended up in jail or dead for their failure to analyse affairs correctly. Here, they are jobless.

    One can point fingers and say: “I told you so. You were stupid. ”

    Or, one can say: “Many Venezuelans believed in Chavez; they know now that they made a mistake. To err is human. But now, we need your help in making things right. Join us.”

    If you really want Chavez out, you’ll reach out to those workers, and their fellow wilting Chavistas/

  8. CARLOS Says:

    lo unico que puedo decirle a estos trabajadores es TOMA LO TUYO, o como deciamos cuando pequeños, TOMA TU TOMATE

  9. Johndoe Says:


    Starring: Luis Tascon
    Ej Alberto Müller Rojas

    The film features two guys facing the smartmatic machines rage in a total rampage of evil, containing original footage shot in HELL itself….

  10. island canuck Says:


    Gobierno interviene casa de valores Inverplus

    Publicada en Gaceta Oficial Nº 39.487 del 13 de agosto de 2010, la intervención y el cese de operaciones de la sociedad mercantil Inverplus Sociedad de Corretaje de Títulos Valores, C.A

  11. Johndoe Says:

    btw current time: lunes, 16 de agosto de 2010, 10:34:19

  12. Johndoe Says:


    This is the bonus 2022 result; it was supposed to be informed at 10:00am:

    Database Error: Unable to connect to the database:The MySQL adapter “mysql” is not available.

    something might be wrong with my clock…..

  13. Roberto N Says:

    There is always a silver lining to just about everything, sometimes though, it’s hard to see it.

    Cases such as this one cause workers in other factories to think twice about asking for expropriations.

    From first hand knowledge I can say that in our particular case, evidence such as Ceramica Carabobo is swaying many of our workers to think twice about ending up “without the goat or the rope”.

    Last year, out of about 180 employees, maybe 50-60 were in favor of doing the same thing to our factory. This July, the number was down to 30 diehards who continue to agitate for this type of solution.

    Surveys of other factory owners in our particular industry show similar situations.

    We are nowhere near to being out of the woods, but the trees are starting to thin out for sure.

  14. nobody special Says:

    Socialism is a modern form of state worship. The state is god, and the various officials are the intercessors.

    The workers have no choice. It is true that the goal is to bring down the rich, but implicit in this is to aggregate power and wealth to those at the top.

    A culture is a remarkable example of the free market in action. Individuals and families communicate their values to the next generation and the result is a culture of shared morals and mores. Venezuela will not change until the culture changes, and in order for the culture to change a cusp event is needed of such magnitude that the average person is willing to voluntarilly adopt a new set of values.

    Historically this is generally the result of either a general religious conversion of the population or an extinction event that kills the majority of the people…

  15. jsb Says:

    Are they even capable of producing the product anymore at Ceramica Carabobo? Sounds just like the Inveval saga.

  16. Kepler Says:

    Deananash is right, except not all the very poor and not just some of the very poor think like that.

    Of course, they did think also that somehow, by some act of magic, their companies would become some sort of prosperous and they would be co-owners JUST LIKE THAT.

    I think this case is an excellent case to show more chavistas what they are doing to themselves.

    The 60 who left first are not likely to vote for Chávez. They were probably threatened by the others anyway. I have been hearing about the union mafias…pretty bad stuff and they are in Venezuela not just a group or two in every state but a lot.

  17. deananash Says:

    You all just don’t get it. The objective of the very poor has ALWAYS been to see the rich brought down, not the poor lifted up.

    Understanding that, why wouldn’t they “love” Chavez? He is achieving exactly what they want accomplished.

  18. Charly Says:

    Those workers really owe it to themselves, so does the rest of the population who keeps voting for mafiosos, fascists and narco-terrorists.

  19. loroferoz Says:

    captainccs: That sums it up nicely.

  20. captainccs Says:

    You make your bed and you lie in it.

    ¡Viva la Robolución!.

  21. loroferoz Says:

    “These guys continue to be pro-Government, which is remarkable”

    Do they really have a choice?

    They now know they are thoroughly, royally screwed. That most of the screwing they did themselves. If there is a private factory hiring, which could use their skills, it would NOT use these guys. Which there is probably not, given the present situation.

    So it’s a bit like the cubans, bite the bullet and proclaim your love for the Revolution, no matter how bad it screws you.

    Of course, you need to throw any dignity you might have overboard. But there was not a lot of that (or of wits) in people clamoring to be taken over by a government that can be described as erratic and authoritarian.

    I suppose that like most Venezuelans and most of Venezuela, these guys need a lot more cooking, they are not nearly broiled.

  22. island canuck Says:

    MO said:
    “These guys continue to be pro-Government, which is remarkable,…”

    That is what is just mind boggling to me.
    The blind stupidity of the remaining people who claim to be Chavista.

    I mean, really.There is no rational excuse anymore other than a cult mentality to keep supporting these goons.

  23. Gerry Says:

    The ‘Lord of the Ruin” strikes again………………….!

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