The Upside Down World of Venezuelan Economics

July 15, 2012

This is truly a devil’s Excrement item, stolen from Andres Rojas’ Facebook page. A gas station in Margarita offering free gas when you wash your car there.

How screwed up can you get?

84 Responses to “The Upside Down World of Venezuelan Economics”

  1. always i used to read smaller articles or reviews which
    as well clear their motive, and that is also happening with this paragraph which
    I am reading here.

  2. Snacks in Xi’an are plentiful, want to know and try out them, welcome to Xi’an, here, you will eat delicious food as well as
    visit famous sites. They include chocolate chip, fruit,
    or nut pancakes. Applesauce is a great no-fat low-sugar alternative panckae topping.

  3. Pretty! This was a really wonderful article.
    Thank you for providing these details.

  4. […] imagen sale del blog de Miguel Octavio, Devil’s Excrement, pero también se puede ver en la cuenta Twitter de su autor, el periodista Andrés Rojas. Es de […]

  5. Carolina Says:

    Back to the topic: How much is a car wash in Margarita?

    Here in oil land Alberta, I get a discount of about $2 for a car wash with the purchase of gas, at $1.15 / liter. Not even a free car wash.

    BTW, Ronaldo, thanks for the minimum font size tip. It worked beautifully. I can put away the magnifying glass.

    • island canuck Says:

      Here in our end of the Island a car wash is around Bs.60 which is about $14 at the official rate & half that at the street rate.

      It’s all by hand – no machines other than a hand held sprayer & kids with towels to do the drying.

      • Carolina Says:

        That’s more or less the price for a “deluxe” in a touchless drive through here, including protector coating rinse and dry with air.

      • Ira Says:

        I’ve been to Margarita twice, and one time, we went to a fort where there are always children around to recite some kind of poem about the history of the place. (They’re basically working the tourists for tips.)

        Do you know where I’m talking about, or am I confusing this with a trip to the DR? My wife’s working now and not here for me to ask.

  6. Off Topic
    The misfit had this to say –
    “Ustedes tienen razón,
    porque aún después de esta vida,
    cuando uno se vaya físicamente,
    yo sé que yo me quedaré con ustedes
    ¡Uh, ah, Chávez no se va!
    Pero, ustedes no se refieren solo a mí.
    Chávez ya no soy yo,
    Chávez se hizo un pueblo.
    Por eso yo digo tú también eres Chávez
    joven venezolano,
    tú también eres Chávez joven venezolana”.

    Tom Waits had this to sing –

    “Well we stick our fingers in
    The ground, heave and
    Turn the world around

    Smoke is blacking out the sun

    At night I pray and clean my gun
    The cracked bell rings as
    The ghost bird sings and the gods
    Go beggin here
    So just open fire
    As you hit the shore
    All is fair in love And war”

    And SCREW O-7!! because I’ll
    keep on SCREWING you all
    even in my grave ! 😛

  7. loroferoz Says:

    The Bipolar rodent summed it up nicely:

    But I guess that in the ocean of Venezuelan idiocy, there is still some people smart enough and to take advantage of it in a somewhat honest manner. And be strangely and brutally honest.

    What they offer really is saving you the bother of filling up.

  8. HectorGabriel Says:

    Comparison between USA and Venezuela? Waste of time.. You cannot walk any street of any state of venezuela without the feeling of a gun ready to take you down and steal all your stuff, even your life..

  9. island canuck Says:

    Here’s an interesting bit of news.

    I guess he was really pissed off that Chavez suggested that he be shipped off to Monagas after he was touted to be the next in line to the throne.

    Globovisión ‏@globovision
    Diosdado Cabello asegura que su candidatura a la Gobernación de Monagas “no está en discusión”

  10. syd Says:

    Miguel, how do you define trolls?

    • moctavio Says:

      To me a troll is someone who just comes here to provoke, inflame, talking off topic and not to engage in the discussions of the blog.

      • syd Says:

        Thank you for that. I think it’s important to define the term. Because lately, I’ve been wondering if trolls don’t apply to the non-confrontational who repeatedly squeeze in their rose-dusted views, through cracks in the discussions. Uno se cansa.

        Have you considered what Daniel does — Issuing a caveat on first view, after hitting the “Reply” link? Here’s his version, as a reminder:

        To have your comments stay published follow these rules:
        1) Do not be repetitive: The worth of a discussion is not based on the number of comments but in their value!
        2) Do not bring grudges and fights from other blogs here.
        3) Trolls will simply be erased. Clever and appropriate put downs may be occasionally accepted.
        4) This is an anti Chavez blog, with mostly anti Chavez readers that have made up their minds over twelve years. Trying to convince us of our errors will likely be considered as a mere troll.

  11. Halfempty Says:

    Certain aspects of Venezuela culture are decidedly Potlach-like. Giving away gasoline for instance.

  12. Please keep the replies and
    the alternative thinkers…
    especially the mislabeled tee ar oh el els.
    They disapeared back in the bbs days.
    Anyone smart to be one,
    has turned to bullying.
    What we are reading
    are from posters worried
    about the status quo,
    and wildly lashing out,
    for lack of direction.

  13. Manrique Says:

    don’t ban any comments. if “troll” start to look at this site and even more, if htey start commenting, LET’s turm them to our side, let’s HELP them open their eyes! they are and will be our best allies!

    • syd Says:

      Oh, my friend, trolls are ‘atornillados’ to their cult. It’s like saying, let’s turn Chávez to our side, let’s help him open his eyes. Tú crees que es posible?

  14. Roy Says:

    I used to do the calculations to compare the price of gasoline, until about a couple years ago, when I realized that it had become priced so low, that it was virtually free.

  15. firepigette Says:

    maria gonzalez,

    In no way was your comment offensive.I was not referring to your comment all per se, I understood the context in which you expressed your defense.

    No problem, cheers!

  16. island canuck Says:

    Ok folks it’s really easy to fix.

    Just go to your browser options & enlarge the print.

    In Chrome it’s “Settings” + “Show Advanced Setting” (bottom of page) + “Web Content” + “Font Size”

    I have mine set at medium & the nesting replies show up fine.

    For FF & IE there are similar settings.

  17. firepigette Says:

    slightly OT:

    The worse part of there are people who will believe:–chavez-con-15,3-puntos-de-ventaja-sob.aspx

    • island canuck Says:

      Ignore the polls – none of them have any basis in fact.

      Was talking to some people this weekend who assured me that they had received calls from pollsters & told them “Chavez” when they will definitely vote for Capriles.

      No phone poll in Venezuela is accurate to within 30%.

  18. firepigette Says:

    I don’t see why we need to have a reply option, people can indicate a reply by addressing a comment to a specific person.

    My reply option is often malfunctioning anyway.I often get a black phrase pop up saying ” cancel reply”, and the reply will not post.

  19. Thanks for trying. I will in general use Reply instead of nesting replies. I guess you’re a victim of the comment software.

    • Ronaldo Says:

      Just zoom in on the page to enlarge the text. In Firefox, hold down the CTRL key then turn the wheel on the mouse or use the +/- keys. No problem. Move along.

    • Wow. You remind me of the typical Venezuelan attitude that instead of solving the problem, tells you to live with it and work around the issue. The point is: I shouldn’t have to zoom in and out screwing with my browser configuration. There are tons of other blogs and forums where that BS is not required to read information effectively, why should I have to in this instance?

      • extorres Says:

        Some browsers allow setting fixed font settings, or minimum sizes for fonts used.

        • Ronaldo Says:

          Firefox allows minimum fonts. TOOLS, OPTIONS, CONTENT, ADVANCED, MINIMUM FONT SIZE.
          Thanks extorres.

          • Ira Says:

            Yeah–I don’t know what he/she/everyone is talking about.

            In my Firefox, the font stays the same. Only the column width narrows with each further nested reply.

            Everything Microsoft is evil, and once people realize this, we will all live happier lives.

  20. moctavio Says:

    Back to the small print 🙂

    • Carolina Says:

      I keep a magnifying glass by my desk. Kind like the joke about blondes and whiteout.
      Just kidding. The best way to read the comments are in the ipad. 🙂

  21. moctavio Says:

    If I say no nested comments, the “reply” option dissapears

  22. moctavio Says:

    No, the options are either allow them to be nested or not. Let me try to see what happens if I say no.

  23. Am I the only one who thinks the Reply mechanism here is atrocious? Each reply gets smaller and smaller font until it’s rendered unreadable. It’s made me visit the comment section less often because I don’t want to strain my eyes.

  24. Alex Says:

    Make sure trolls like that exfiltrator do no get airtime here as their intentions are only to seed chaos. Do you really think he/she is here to learn or debate reasonably? Just take a look at Noticiero Digital and you’ll see what I mean. C’mon people, let’s keep the devil professional. And yes! I still have no idea what exfiltrator tried to say. For that to happen people need enough oxygen at birth.

    • firepigette Says:

      I agree with Alex.I wish blog owners would ban the trolls.Caracas Chronicles has lately turned into a useless sea of trolls with their corresponding groupies.Maybe it’s troll season but do we have to converse with them?

      • Alex Says:

        I’m not going to say I come to the devil’s site every day. I’d say at least once/week but more commonly twice. I admit I never gave it a thought how professional it is because as far as I can remember, I haven’t seen trolls here, especially the one above with such quality grammar. Probably is the poised, dignified way Mr. Octavio writes that invites respect . That being said, I’m concerned, only a bit but still concerned.

        • firepigette Says:

          I definitely think Miguel’s character invites respect, but sometimes if a troll appears and gets attention from someone in the audience, they continue because they are ” fed”.

    • island canuck Says:

      I also agree that CC has fallen into a septic tank. I get irritated having to scan through the garbage to read intelligent & informed responses & ideas.

      Don’t visit there as much anymore which, I guess, is exactly what they want.

      • Carolina Says:

        I do. I just don’t engage in an argument with someone that won’t vote.

        • syd Says:

          QUOTE OF THE DAY: I just don’t engage in an argument with someone that won’t vote (in the Venezuelan elections).

          • Carolina Says:

            Syd, thanks for finishing my sentence. When I’m rushing through 1/2 lunch break sometimes my fingers don’t go as fast as my brain. Or viceserversa! Good thing you got what I meant. 🙂

    • Roy Says:


      I agree with Alex. I don’t think that trolls have a right to disrupt a blog at will.

      I don’t condone censorship, but any group of people have a right to choose who they associate with in private. If I were to crash a meeting of a pro-choice political group on private property and disrupt their meeting by yelling at them and calling them “baby-killers”, they would be within their rights to have me ejected.

      Is a blog private property? I would say yes, in that, while it is open to the public, it is moderated by its owner. It is not public in the sense that a public plaza is public. It is public in the sense that a supermarket is public. Yes, it is open to the public, but it is private property, and they reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.

      Does that mean you should exclude anyone who disagrees with you? Of course not. That would make for a pretty dull debate. But, you do have a right to ensure the quality of discourse is up to your standards.

      • firepigette Says:

        well said Roy.If it were my blog I would ban anyone who falls into insults as well, with a prior warning first of course.

        Then again I was one of those kinds of teachers who had 0 tolerance for school bullies and their associates.

        • moctavio Says:

          I hate banning people, only two people banned in nine years. I have been deleting some comments recently, I haven announced it, nobody has complained.

  25. exfiltrator Says:

    Is the USA doing better?

    • Kepler Says:

      Aj, er imperio…majunches, majunches! Socialismo y Bolívar! Viviremos y venceremos! Er impeeeeerio! CIA! Patria, patria, socialismo o muerte! Y Haier, neveras socialistas, pantaletas socialistas, salmón socialista!
      Que se cae la casa? Mira ar Imperiooooooo!

      • maria gonzalez Says:

        Exfiltrator, do you live in USA or Germany? the quality of life in Venezuela is very low and Venezuelans do not know this. Yes there are poor people in USA or other developed country, they are natural disaster and the economy is not has good as everybody is expected…but you do not have to worry about light or water services going out for not reason. The problem I have in supermarkets is too many choices of cereals, toilet paper,milk and everything else. However you know what is the best the low crime rate…the fact that as a woman I can walk home past 8:00 pm and feel safe is the best feeling of the world…so do not blame the capitalism…the problem in Venezuela is that corruption is ingrated in our genes and the “viveza criolla” and the bull shit of “we are a rich country” is killing the country…in the IV and in the V…
        Venezuelans are guilty of want happen in Venezuela so stop blaming others!
        BTW…I do not live in el Doral or any other place in USA full of Venezuelans and I lived in Libertador when I lived in Venezuela…so I never was a sifrina

        • Ira Says:

          What’s a sifrina?

          • firepigette Says:

            Ira, that’s a word that doesn’t have an exact translation in English.It might mean a spoiled and snooty girl, but it is used against most middle or upper class and who have a certain East -Caracas accent.

            There are people on this blog who have called me a sifrina because I lived in Caurimare.Just imagine.I am a bohemian type, who often went to CADA in alpargatas, and feel quite comfortable with relative poverty because I can turn any home into something beautiful, I don’t need much money for that.I love simple people, and an authentic life style.

            Personally I think the term is just a catch all to denigrate others, and make the accuser feel good about his or herself.

            • maria gonzalez Says:

              Firepigette, I did not mean to be offensive. Sorry if I offended in any way. My point was that you can disagree with the Patria, socialismo bull shit and know what quality of living is even if you grow up at few kilometers of Caracas’ downtown area.

    • Roy Says:

      “Is the USA doing better?”

      I suppose it is always a matter of opinion, but at least they have milk in the supermarkets… every day… every kind… several brands.

      Again, a matter of opinion, but they have electrical power that is so dependable, that if it does go out, it is only because of a major storm or disaster, and they consider it major news, not an every day occurrence.

      Again, a matter of opinion, but they have a currency that doesn’t have one of the highest inflation rates in the world.

      Again, a matter of opinion, but they have a homicide rate an eighth of Venezuela’s.

      But, it is only an opinion…

      • island canuck Says:

        I just returned from a trip to Florida & the comparisons between our life here in Venezuela & there are so huge that to try & say that there is a comparison between the two would indicate that the person making the comment has not been to one or the other.

        Massive choices of products there – here shortages of everything.
        I haven’t seen 100% orange juice in Margarita in months – there you have choices of dozens of brands & textures, ha, ha.

        Why does Corpolec need to turn off the electricity to do normal maintenance? Doesn’t happen there.

        Was able to sit at outdoor bars at night & watch the people strolling along the boulevard. Doesn’t happen here.

        Why are prices here higher than there even at black market rates when minimum wages here are US$1.17 per hour while US minimum rates average around US$8 per hour? eg. Why does a locally produced package of bacon cost $9.92 a lb. in Sigo when it’s only US$6 in Miami?

        I could keep going on but the point is that the USA, today, is so far advanced over Venezuela that there is not a comparison to make. It’s like comparing a brand new Cadillac with a 1950s Volkswagen Bug.

    • ErneX Says:

      Well, let me give you an example: an iMac that costs 1300 dollars in the US is being sold at 5500 dollars in socialist Venezuela. Meaning that with the same money you can afford one in Hugoslavia you can buy 4 in the US.

      Oh and no, wages aren’t even comparable. In the US they are miles better.

      • maria gonzalez Says:

        What happen is that your are a “capitalista majunche”…you should be proud to get the Canaima importadas desde Portugal!

  26. exfiltrator Says:

    Venezuela is great for traveling by car exept ofcourse for US Mim. 4 weel drive like on the US roadmap to get de Venezualian oil and minarals like we see in Libya and Syria, Venezuela dasn(t to increase oilprices because they don’t make wars abroad !

    • Ronaldo Says:

      Stuped moranic comments from people that cannot spell and don’t open their eyes have little to contribute here. Chavez is supporting and encouraging wars across the planet. Wake up. Venezuela has more murders than most countries at war and Chavez thinks it is ok.

      Did you get your free housing yet?

      • exfiltrator Says:

        It is the honnesty of a comment that counts, perfect written but al lies like yours and CIA propaganda and intoxication is worse ! Btw i’m living on a boat !

        • Kepler Says:


          It’s not “yours and CIA propaganda”, we are the same. We are CIA agents. My name is Bourne, Jason Bourne. Ronaldo’s nom de guerre is Paz.

          We were both trained for the Treadstone program.

          We are worried because of your leader, Chávez,
          is spending billions dollars (over 9 billion now)
          to prepare Veneezuela for the asymmetric war…like the
          100 Russian T-72B1V or the amphibious vehicles from Chinese for 500 million just bought now

          or the different MI helicopters

          (almost a dozen of which have gone down
          because one of our agents threw iguanas against the rotors)

          The US forces are totally powerless against such asymmetric weapons
          as planes and tanks and amphibious vehicles…
          you are really really clever.

          • Ronaldo Says:

            That is so cool.
            All Venezuelan aircraft can be neutralized with a paint gun. Venezuelan forces will follow their leader and hide under their desks rather than take any chances of not looking good in a red beret.

          • Halfempty Says:

            CIA? No, maybe CID or OSS, but certainly not CIA or Mi6 they are all false flags for M0$$@D. (usually).

            FLAGG out.

      • Ira Says:

        You were able to figure out what he said?

      • miguel Says:

        Ronaldo Dude you are full of shit bro just keep smokong what ever your smoke and do not talk more shit about latin america leader pendejo

  27. marzolian Says:

    Move along, folks. Nothing to see here. Gasoline in my neighborhood (Houston TX) is normally about $3.30 these days, but we can get it for under $3 with a car wash. In the overall scale of weirdness (1-10), this is barely a 1.

    • Wanley Says:

      Dou you get a full tank of gas free?

      • moctavio Says:

        Yes, I have now heard of at least four instances like this, free tank of gas with car wash or oil change. It is not that much, at most 0.5 dollars atthe black market rate, one dollar atthe official one.

        • spanows Says:

          Rubbish, the first guy Marzolian is talking about a 30 cents per gallon decrease so you’re looking at a 5 to 10 dollar discount on a full tank of gas. In Venezuela a tank never gets over 2 dollars anyway and Wanley’s comment is questioning whether you get a free tank in Texas, not Venezuela.

          • moctavio Says:

            was replying to Wanley, who I think was asking if the free gas was a full tank of gas with a car wash. The answer to that is yes.

  28. Mel Jove Says:

    Different strokes for different folks. Come to Valencia where an oil change will get you a free car wash.

  29. Canadian Says:

    No point to have a hybrid/electric car over there. Eh!

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