"Magical Realism"

 We’ll be heading Down The Rabbit Hole shortly but first…Washington Times had an interesting piece that may explain a lot. “Magical Realism” is a literary style popular in Latin America for decades and especially popular in Venezuela. In “Magical Realism” ordinary people experience inexplicable, almost mystical phenomena assuming a dreamlike kind of logic where things are neither explained nor questioned. Some things “just are”…they “just happen”.

 This view of the surreal world of today’s Venezuela is likely shared by both the Maduro regime, who are positively giddy about what’s happening (“Can you believe we got away with this?), and the people who are desperately resigned to their suffering.

 How else, other than “Magical Realism” could you explain a country going from receiving 96% of it’s revenue from being a global oil production and distribution power, with everything else an afterthought, to a narco- state receiving 90% of it’s revenue from cocaine production and distribution, with everything else an afterthought (despite Maduro’s absurd statements that Venezuela stands ready to supply the world’s oil and gas needs)?

 There are countless examples covering every aspect of life and society in Venezuela where, before Chavismo, life may not have been great for everyone but , for most it wasn’t too bad, to the world of 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism where life is great for 5% of the population and the rest live in poverty (95%) or extreme poverty (76%) lacking food, medicine, reliable electricity and access to fresh water, as well as lacking any semblance of Human Rights and devoid of the rule of law.

 And yet, Maduro and the Chavistas remain in power and the Biden administration, despite protestations to the contrary, seems intent on easing sanctions on the Maduro regime in return for the promise of, as we’ve proven many times, nonexistent oil. “The cold face of logic tells us pigs cannot fly.” I contend that the existence and longevity of Chavismo and 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism says otherwise.

 Then we have The Hill with the headline ” US Needs A New Partnership With Guyana”. We agree 100%. As we’ve previously stated, tiny little Guyana, about the same population of North Dakota, will pass Venezuela in oil production within two years.

 Guyana’s President, Mohamed Irfaan Ali, has an impressive vision for the country and favors a balanced approach, developing oil resources, protecting Guyana’s pristine rain forests, as well as investing in education, healthcare, infrastructure, and solar energy.

 The US needs to be a reliable partner in all these efforts and to help Guyana in it’s security efforts. This president and his and his country are the antithesis of Nicolas Maduro and Venezuela. With Exxon Mobil already well established we are in good position to support President Ali’s efforts in both the development of Guyana’s economy and the country in general.

 Then we have Law 360 reporting that PDVSA (Venezuela government-owned oil company) petitioned a US Federal Court in Delaware to drop an order forcing it to pay a $1.2 billion award against the Venezuela government claiming it is no longer an alter ego for Venezuela. All prior efforts to differentiate PDVSA from the Venezuela government have failed.

 And we have Refugees International reporting that Venezuelan migrants in Guatemala are being returned to Honduras even though they paid the bribes requested by Guatemala police to let them stay and continue northward. There is a coordinated effort to deter Venezuelan migrants at the Guatemala border while migrants from other Central American countries may pass freely.

 Other Central American countries have restrictions on Venezuelan migrants as do countries in South America and Mexico. The options for Venezuelan migrants are fewer and fewer now that countries have been overwhelmed with over 7 million Venezuelans fleeing 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism.

 Note : Everybody knows about the Western Hemisphere and countries around the world being flooded with Venezuelan migrants but not enough attention is paid to why they are fleeing Venezuela. Yes, there is a serious issue with lack of Human Rights under the Maduro regime , but the primary driver of the mass exodus from Venezuela is that 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism has destroyed every aspect of life in Venezuela. We here at TFT will keep saying it. Socialism fails…every time!

 And we have Caracas Chronicles telling us that Diosdado Cabello (The second most powerful man in Venezuela, some say #1) was talking about CONATEL, similar to the FCC in the US, closing down 80 radio stations in 16 states saying that many had been closed by their owners. ” There’s never been more freedom of speech.” We address this in one of our Venezuela : Down The Rabbit Hole segments. The Maduro regime is in total control of radio, TV, and print/online media in Venezuela.

 And we have Prepara Familia reporting that 11 patients at the JM de los Rios Hospital have died in 2022 awaiting the reactivation of the transplant program shut down over five years ago by the Maduro regime. For those keeping track, five years ago was well before Covid-19. The program wasn’t shut down due to the pandemic. It was shut down due to Chavismo.

 Now lets go Down The Rabbit Hole, shall we? ….

 Chapter 6/ continued…

… In their “first” whitepaper, the document containing the concept and goals of the project, “El Petro” was to be backed by their unmatched oil reserves (to get around that nasty little credibility issue). Each Petro coin (they initially issued 100 million coins) would be backed by a barrel of oil and the price would be the same as said barrel, originally set at $60. Sounds good right? Sort of their version of when sovereign currencies still had the gold standard. Details to follow…?

 The usual suspects created quite a buzz. Supportive governments and individuals were quick to pose the question, “Is this the way of the future?”, just as they had all rushed to proclaim 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism as “the way of the future” and were now desperately reaching for something positive in the debacle that was Chavismo. It wouldn’t take long for reality to set in although Maduro and his supporters would continue to hype it…to this day.

 Reality comes into play when real people have to invest real money in something. The cryptocurrency community had a lot of questions for Chavismo.The first was “What does ‘backed by a barrel of oil’ mean?” The answer will surprise absolutely nobody. Lets say you had 100,000 Petros and wanted to sell them but there were no buyers. Could you send a tanker to Venezuela and pick up your 100,000 barrels of oil? Well…No. The barrels of oil backing “El Petro” were designated to come from a couple of blocks in an oilfield that had yet to be developed. It was really a glorified IOU.

 Well…uhh…OK. Lets say I was still willing to buy some Petros. What blockchain technology was (is) supporting “El Petro”? Originally “El Petro” would use the Ethereum platform which was well known in the cryptocurrency community. It seems someone forgot to tell Ethereum. Then they said they would use the NEM platform. NEM wasn’t at the top of the list like Ethereum but they did exist. Well, NEM didn’t get the memo. As the first of several “official launch” dated approached the Chavistas announced the creation of their own platform that would support “El Petro”. Funny thing is, when you went to their website for some details about the platform it looked as if someone just copied and pasted details of the Dash cryptocurrency platform. Hmmm… If you wanted to use the platform you could go to “the manual” to find out how to buy PTR, the symbol for “El Petro”. The only problem was that the “manual” was just a cover page that said “Manual” with no content. Hmmm….

 What about rating agencies or organizations? Maybe they can shed some light on this if I’m still undaunted in my quest to own PTR. I mean, after all, the government already announced in their “pre-sale” that they had sold $735 million. No…wait… they upped that to $3.3 billion. No…wait…it’s actually $5 billion! I don’t want to let an opportunity pass me by, do I? (Ever hear of the term FOMO, fear of missing out) It turns out that none of the sales could be verified,,,shocker! The top four cryptocurrency ratings organizations said it was a scam while the others simply refused to issue a rating. The Washington Post did, however, have something to say. “The Petro might be the most obviously horrible investment ever.” It’s also telling that the Chavistas wouldn’t accept their own currency for purchases of PTR although they would modify that stance after Maduro announced his economic overhaul and the introduction of his new currency,the “Sovereign Bolivar”.

 More tomorrow….

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