More Migrant Misdirection

 We’ll go Down The Rabbit Hole in just a bit but first… Aljazeera reports that earlier this year the US announced it would open “Safe Mobility” sites in countries like Colombia and Guatemala to deter migrants and asylum seekers from attempting to reach the US southern border on foot.

 OK, lets pause for a sec. We here at TFT have been critical of the Biden administration’s border policy (and pretty much all their other policies) from day one. As millions of illegal immigrants pour across the US southern border the Biden administration wants to make it look like they’re addressing the issue.

 They sent VP Harris, the “Border Czar”, to Guatemala to discuss the “root causes” of migration with the President of Guatemala. After she left he never heard from her again. This plan is more of the same “smoke and mirrors”.

 Continuing on…Aljazeera interviewed migrants outside one of the recently opened “Safe Mobility” sites in Medellin, Colombia and one such interview perfectly illustrates our point.

 Juan (name withheld for safety concerns) held a high-profile position in the Venezuela government, coordinating voters during elections and other political activities.

 When rumors began falsely accusing him of passing secret government information to the US, cars appeared outside his home to surveil him and his family, and he continued to receive death threats. Juan, his wife, his daughter, and grand daughter fled Venezuela.

 Since arriving in Medellin he has moved five times to avoid being tracked down by the Chavistas. Although the “Safe Mobility” processing center has only been open for about a month, the center (and others ) began accepting applications for asylum earlier but the portal was only open briefly in June and again for a day in August.

 After checking the website daily, Juan went to the office to inquire about political asylum but was turned away for not having an appointment. A State Department official told Aljazeera that the “Safe Mobility” centers are taking a “phased approach” to process people in an “orderly” way. An estimated 28,000 people have applied for an appointment in Colombia alone.

 As Juan and others wait and try to avoid detection (not to mention day to day survival) their status appears to be anything but “safe”. Most migrants deemed eligible for entry to the US have been referred to USRAP (US Refugee Administration Program). The Refugee Coordination Center estimates the average timeline for claims at four years.

 So, I guess if you can’t wait four years you still have to make the trip and show up at the US southern border to claim asylum, which is exactly what this plan was supposed to avoid… just more “smoke and mirrors”…more migrant misdirection… Way to go Joe!!

 Now, lets head Down The Rabbit Hole…

 Chapter 8 continued…

 …So you can see that even with the big bump in gas prices I could still fill up my tank for a quarter…and that was when it was expensive! Maduro’s economic mismanagement would eventually make a liter of the above referenced gasoline cost $0.000001 (6 bsf/ liter with the exchange rate of the new bsS, the one that lopped off five zeros from the bsf, at 6,000 bsS/ dollar). To leave the subsidized price so low must cost a fortune, right? Yes, it does.

 To get an idea of the lost revenue lets use some low numbers so our lost revenue estimate will be on the low side, a minimum, if you will. Although historic usage is much higher on average, lets use the number of 200,000 bpd (barrels per day) of gasoline. In a country of five million cars this should be much higher but there aren’t as many cars on the road these days (from 2019 and today numbers are even less). People either can’t find parts to keep their cars running or can’t afford them. So, 200,000 bpd X 55 gallons (the average volume of a barrel) = 11 million gallons a day. Lets use a really low gas price, in real world terms, of a dollar a gallon X 11 million gallons X 365 days a year = over $4 billion a year in lost revenue… And these are the low numbers!!

 Every analyst and ally, except Cuba, has advised Maduro to raise gasoline prices again (not like that seemingly huge 6,000% hike in 2016…up to 25 cents per tankful). He has listened to none of them, which is pretty much his reaction to any advice that requires him to change policy. He did announce a major price increase at the time of his economic overhaul and the introduction of his new currency, the Sovereign Bolivar. Tell me if this doesn’t sound typically Chavista. The new plan would involve new registration and regulation levels. Two different gas prices, subsidized prices for those registered with the plan, and an international price for those not registered. Of course, this would be through the “Carnet de la Patria” and also required that people register their cars for the plan. So the government gets more people to sign up for the corrupt “Homeland Card”, gathers more information on cars and car owners, and then does nothing. Gas prices in 2019 were still where they were in 2016. I almost forgot to mention that when the new bsS came into being the government had to allow the old currency, the bsf, to stick around for a while because the new currency didn’t have a denomination small enough to pay for gasoline.

 More tomorrow….

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