Food shortages, high inflation rates, protest, and violence: one sees these headlines in a Google search of Venezuela today. All around the country, there are long lines to buy simple necessities, like bread and milk. High inflation rates lead to shortages of food supplies, which increase frustration leading to protests in the streets and, sadly, an increase of violence. The protests and violence result from the inability of Venezuelans to provide the most basic human needs for their families. Sky-rocketing inflation rates in Venezuela are the result of Hugo Chavez, the former socialist and revolutionary leader of the country, and his administration. While in power, Chavez was so consumed with fixing the social issues in Venezuela, that other aspects of the country were ignored – like the economy. In 2014, Venezuela is left with a destroyed economy, angry people, and a government that is trying to fix the many issues the country currently faces; although the government is committed to finding solutions, the people of Venezuela do not feel the government is fixing the problems fast enough.Hugo Chavez was a powerful and positive force in addressing social issues, however, his singular focus on social issues at the expense of other matters of the country left the Venezuelan economy in tatters. In 1998, 50.4% of the Venezuelan population was living below the poverty line, where as in 2006 the numbers dropped to 36.3% (Chavez leaves). Although he aggressively confronted the issue of poverty in Venezuela, many other problems were worsened. Some Chavez critics say he used the state oil company like a piggy bank for projects: funding homes, and healthcare while neglecting oil infrastructure and production. Without growth in the oil ind…
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