On Venezuela, NY Times Up To Old Tricks
This response to a recent anti-Chavez article was caught off the Marxism list:
The NY Times writes (in response to new Govt. measure vs. inflation), "But demagoguery and showmanship will do nothing to solve Venezuela's 20 percent inflation rate.... Venezuela's currency, the Bolívar, has lost about a fifth of its value since January..."
Nice to see the Gray Lady up to her old tricks.
I haven't been covering economic affairs for a couple of weeks, so I thought
on reading this that perhaps I had missed the news of Venezuela's
devaluation, though I didn't think so. And a quick check of Google News (in
Spanish, the English language press coverage of Venezuela is worthless)
tells me that in fact I didn't miss it. It did not happen.
Because Venezuela operates with a system of foreign currency controls and
allocations on the basis of a fixed exchange rate set by the Central Bank,
if there had been a devaluation, to honestly report on it, the NYT would
have had to tell us when the last time was that the Bolívar's official
exchange rate changed, but of course that is impossible since the *truth* is
that Bolívar's exchange rate has not changed.
What has changed is the black market exchange rate used by wealthy
Venezuelans to turn the local currency into dollars for smuggling out of the
country. And I know that bourgeois journalists are true experts on black
market currency operations.
And there will be plenty more reporting and editorializing along the lines
of the Venezuelan economic "catastrophe" in coming months and years...
So it Goes,