5,000 Venezuelans Line Up to Buy Oil at 2:00 AM for a Penny a Liter

Venezuelans started lining up at 2:00 AM for essentially free motor oil. By 11:00 AM the line was estimated at 5,000.

In a two-day government sale, Venezuelans Line Up for Motor Oil as Hyperinflation Soars

Thousands of Venezuelans began lining up before dawn Friday outside a Caracas stadium, hoping to get a hold of a prized item: motor oil.

“I got here at 2 a.m.,” said Carolina Estrella, a 32-year-old office manager, in line to purchase 12 liters for her family’s three cars. National guard officers estimated about 5,000 people were in line by 11 a.m.

The two-day-only sale was announced by Venezuela’s state oil giant, Petroleos de Venezuela SA, Thursday and at 300,000 bolivars per liter, the price is a steal compared to the 25 million bolivars ($8) charged for any imported kind at a car shops around Caracas.

There is always a shortage of goods and long lines when government sets a price below market cost.

Socialism has huge costs.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (14)
No. 1-14
2banana
2banana

Sanders, Kennedy, Penn, Obama, Carter, Moore and Stone were not available for comment?

FelixMish
FelixMish

Point a gun at the seller and you get lines around the block. Point a gun at the buyer and you get a black market.

I find the asymmetry interesting.

thimk
thimk

the oil will be used for barter, a de facto currency . so this is what maduro meant with the Petro.!

Onni4me
Onni4me

There was an excellent documentary by a guy that visited Cuba every decade or so and also at the same time sometimes saw Castro and then 3 brothers that had a small farm. At early stage everything seemed fine, but slowly the cows were stolen and eaten, the houses started to be on the brink of a collapse, water had to be fetched from far and an endless stream of problems. Those who could, left the country. The devastating effect doesn't show itself immediately and occasionally the people might even benefit somewhat but the trend is guaranteed, a slow downwards slope towards hopelessness.

ThinkItOver
ThinkItOver

Before the collapse of the Iron Curtain I had friends from Poland visiting my summer cottage and they were astonished I could have one, because in their country all the building material had been stolen away overnight, oh socialism.

Carl_R
Carl_R

I always wonder why, but the modern trend seems to be to blame Central banks for all the problems of the world, which is odd, since they are largely irrelevant to the problems. The blame seems to be based on the fact that they are a facilitator, and they are able to keep the economy going, and to keep resources flowing, regardless of the crazy things done by the fiscal branch of government. Take the central bank away, we'd have collapsed already. Take away the fiscal imprudence, and the job of the Central bankers is easy, even unnecessary.

The real problem is human nature, which expects something for nothing. That, in turn, leads to an interminable growth in government, and growth in debt, both of which inevitably stifle the economy. Blaming the Central banks is like blaming the mailman for the fact that you get bills. Yes, the bills appear through the mailman, but he isn't the cause. Yes, the problems of the economy flow through the central banks, but they didn't cause them.

Tengen
Tengen

I think we can agree that people are capable of both good and bad deeds. The problem with modern central banking is that it encourages bad/reckless behavior to such an extent that increasingly terrible crashes are inevitable. Sure, there have always been severe economic downturns, but with central banking we no longer attempt to rein in/correct any of the causes, nor do we try to learn from mistakes. If anything we reward perpetrators by letting them gobble up additional assets (smaller firms that aren't as well politically connected), giving them even more power! We're actively encouraging fraud on a massive scale at this point with TBTF policies.

If we're saying that human nature is inherently bad, well, what's the point of any structure? I don't share that view, which is why I'd like to encourage behavior that benefits more than a tiny percentage of the population.

Tengen
Tengen

I should mention that the mailman analogy is a poor one, unless your mailman wields tremendous power. It would be like a mailman who delivers only paychecks and bills, but gets to unilaterally decide who receives them, and how much they are. He can play favorites with cronies (Goldman, MS, Citi, etc) and lavish paychecks on friends while throwing all the bills at everyone else.

Oh, and should anyone call this juggernaut mailman's methods into question, he can shield himself from any FOIA requests and be as opaque as he wants. He can create paycheck money out of thin air and never needs to disclose how much money he gives out, when, or why. He's also able to straddle the line between being public or private, using the best of both worlds to protect himself from any criticism or consequences. In other words, every dog in the world would be justified in trying to bite this particular mailman.

Snow_Dog
Snow_Dog

If we pretend to work, how long will the Central Banks pretend the zombie business that employs us is still solvent?

Snow_Dog
Snow_Dog

Bernie Sanders ~~> notes that Madura won the last election

Kennedy (?) ~~> Robert or retiring Justice Anthony

Sean Penn ~~> denies any involvement, but has tried some of the pot produced in the region. As research for an upcoming role, of course.

Barack “Yes we can” Obama ~~> asks that we give it more time, he’s sure Maduro is what is best for all.

Jimmy Carter ~~> actually served as an unofficial election observer. God help us all if his role had been official

Michael Moore ~~> still too disgusted with them for their role as oil producing nation

Oliver Stone ~~> someone tipped him off that it may have been Maduro, and not Ted Cruz’s father, on the street in Dallas on Nov 22, 1963. Stone is looking into it.