North Texas Daily

President Maduro, help Venezuela before helping Trump

President Maduro, help Venezuela before helping Trump

President Maduro, help Venezuela before helping Trump
May 01
14:45 2017

Matthew Li | Staff Writer

It is amazing how far Venezuela President Nicolás Maduro has allowed his nation to fall. For the country with the largest proven oil reserves in the world, 297 billion barrels, it is amazing how badly it is managed. It has more reserves than Saudi Arabia, yet somehow the rulers of Saudi Arabia have managed to change a barren desert into a beacon of wealth and luxury in the heart. Similar to how the Muslim empires of old used the spice and gold trade to finance their amazing cities, Saudi Arabia has used its massive oil reserves to build itself a new shining bastion of opulence.

Not only is Venezuela not as wealthy as Saudi Arabia, it has one of the worst track records for human rights in the world. There is surprisingly no gas for those citizens, where underneath the ground lies enough oil to satisfy the need for multiple years. This country cannot even produce enough oil to satisfy the needs of its own.

On the other hand, Japan has literally no oil reserves and depends on exports for all of its oil, yet it manages to satisfy the needs of its country and even keep some in reserve. Venezuela isn’t just oil deficient; it doesn’t even have enough food to feed all of its constituents. Even the country’s main airport, Simón Bolívar International Airport in Caracas, lacks toilet paper for its travelers. An airport is the first thing a traveler sees when they come to your country, so logically it should be the best that the country has to offer. If Venezuela has no toilet paper for its biggest airport, then imagine how the rest of the country is doing.

Maduro has decided that in the midst of the countrywide protests, famine and the battle between police and protesters, this would be a good time to donate $500,000 to the inauguration of U.S. President Donald Trump. This comes from a country where the GDP per capita is only $12,000 a year, which equals the entire livelihood of 42 Venezuelans in an entire year.

The Venezuelan-owned company Citgo was the generous donor, giving on the likes of ExxonMobil and JPMorgan Chase. No one knew Maduro’s thought process as he decided to neglect his own citizens and place the most recent American inauguration as one of his top priorities.

It would also be interesting to note that Maduro is a socialist, very far removed from Trump’s capitalism. Trump’s ideas are not even on par with Maduro’s agenda, yet these two seem to be very chummy. Maduro has been slow to publicly condemn Trump, even though he blames most of Venezuela’s ills on the capitalist pigs of America.

The problem at heart doesn’t lie with the changing price of oil, but with the management of Venezuela. There is no reason why a country with such a large supply of oil and the means to extract it should have problems meeting the bare minimum of its citizen’s requirements. In a country where doctors make the same as taxi drivers, there’s a clear economic problem that lies with the socialist policies of the rulers, not the price of oil. Saudi Arabia has weathered this drop in oil prices, and Venezuela should be able to do the same. If Maduro doesn’t start some radical reforms soon, he is looking at a violent revolution.

Featured Illustration: Antonio Mercado

About Author

Preston Mitchell

Preston Mitchell

Preston served as the Opinion Editor of the North Texas Daily from July 2016 to July 2017, and is a UNT graduate of integrative studies.

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