The United Nations is a bureaucratic farce. Just in case anyone had forgotten, the international organization has provided a reminder in the form of an insult to the Venezuelan people award to the Venezuelan government.
As Venezuela’s people wait in long lines at empty supermarkets, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization has decided to formally recognize the Maduro government for “meeting the UN millennium goal of halving malnutrition.”
Unsurprisingly, Venezuela’s media has seized on this propaganda victory. But it is unlikely to have an impact.
After 15 years of 21st Century Socialism—first under Hugo Chavez, and now Nicolás Maduro—the Venezuelan economy has become a basket case.
Shortages of basic necessities are robbing Venezuelans of basic human dignity.
Citizens can spend as long as 12 hours in line trying to secure basic products like milk and chicken. And food isn’t the only problem. Soap and toilet paper have become valuable black market commodities, as legal supplies run out.
On the bright side, Venezuela won’t have to worry about a demographic crisis, not with condoms costing $755 per box.
Even state-run hospitals have had to close wards because of a shortage of heart surgery drugs.
It is simply insulting to be honouring the Venezuelan government whilst the people suffer. Even an organization like the UN, so accustomed to stumbling from irrelevance to ignominy, ought to have thought twice about it.
Unfortunately, this is only the beginning of Venezuela’s problems.
As the LA Times reports:
In addition to shortages that have consumers waiting in long lines for sugar, cooking oil, soaps, rice and other items, Venezuela is also in the grips of a sputtering economy and rising inflation that last year averaged 63%, the highest rate in Latin America.
This inflation rate is predicted to more than double this year, and may go as high as 200 per cent.
The government’s response to the crisis has been typically counter-productive. The minimum wage has been raised by 30 per cent, purchase limits are being rigorously enforced, and there has been a crackdown on dissent. And of course, the government is blaming America for the whole thing—in short; it’s been more of the same.
It’s bad enough that the Venezuelan people have to suffer through this economic hardship and government incompetence. The UN’s award just adds insult to injury.