Venezuelan government: Uhm, these rolling blackouts are totally the result of the opposition’s sabotage

posted at 9:21 pm on September 4, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Hmmm. Venezuela sits on top of some of the world’s largest proven oil reserves, and yet they somehow can’t even manage to find the money nor the resources to keep the lights on consistently. You might be tempted to think that this stems from their fundamentally, horribly, tragically flawed political and economic institutions — but you’d be wrong.

The real cause of the rolling blackouts that affected almost 70 percent of the country on Tuesday was, obviously, the usual suspect: The evil and imperialistic Western powers that be! Or, uhm, wait — it was sabotage from the political opposition party! …No, scratch that — it was because of an iguana on the power lines!

Via the AP:

Venezuelans were skeptical Wednesday of President Nicolas Maduro’s claims that saboteurs were responsible for a blackout that left about 70 percent of the country without electricity and caused chaos in Caracas, interrupting subway service and snarling traffic. …

“I don’t believe this tale about sabotage. We all know who is to blame,” said Adriana Montoya, a 45-year-old housewife who said she was stuck for hours in traffic that snarled as traffic lights went dark and subway service halted in Caracas, which lost power for five hours Tuesday. …

Maduro claimed sabotage by “the extreme right-wing” was the cause but did not present any evidence. …

Even before Maduro’s announcement, top opposition politician Leopoldo Lopez poked fun at officials… “We already know what you are going to say: That it was an iguana, a lightning bolt or sabotage,” he tweeted.

Venezuelans have had to deal with blackouts for years (among other shortages of basic goods and services, ahem), and the government rather conveniently stopped publishing information about its electrical generation and distribution in 2010. It’s almost like socialism leads to corrupt and opaque regimes that utterly destroy market signals and induce completely unnecessary economic crises that lead to widespread inefficiency, poverty, and misery, no?

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