Posts Tagged ‘Index of Economic Freedom’

Venezuela: Shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic UPDATED

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Venezuela Shuffles Economic Team
Maduro Also Pledges to Keep Fixed Exchange Rate Unchanged This Year

The president also said the central foreign-exchange board, Cadivi, would be incorporated into a separate government body overseeing external commerce.

Some Venezuelans misinterpreted that to mean that

Cadivi will be eliminated, which many interpreted as the elimination of Cadivi for the private sector, and the Government keeping the Bs. 6.3 per US$ rate to itself.

$5 says that Maduro’s regime will only increase whatever control it exerts over the private sector, Cadivi or whatever you call it. While he was at it, Maduro just created

111 new Vice-Ministers to accompany the thirty Ministers that accompany in his Cabinet. The hilarious thing is that the decree creating these new positions (Decree 730) actually says that this “optimizes” the structure of Government, not once, but twice.

I wonder how many of these new ministers are former military, a la Cuba.

The 2014 Index of Economic Freedom rates 178 countries on four broad categories, or pillars, of economic freedom:

  1. Rule of Law (property rights, freedom from corruption);
  2. Limited Government (fiscal freedom, government spending);
  3. Regulatory Efficiency (business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom); and
  4. Open Markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom).

Venezuela is 175th, or 4th from the bottom. Only Zimbabwe, Cuba and North Korea rated worse – all countries whose leaders Hugo Chavez admired.

At long last socialism

What happened yesterday is that the government doubled down on the insane economic policies that, in case you have not heard, have brought growth to a standstill, fueled inflation, generated unprecedented scarcity, and has sent the black market into overdrive.

The most corrupt countries in the world

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

In our hemisphere, Haiti and Venezuela are in the bottom 20 most corrupt, while Canada, Barbados, the USA and Uruguay are in the top 20 least corrupt, with the Bahamas, Chile and Saint Lucia in the top 25,

h/t Business Insider

Contrary to the Pope’s expectations, the least corrupt overlap the Index of Economic Freedom. Economic freedom goes hand in hand with less corruption.

Related: Catholics and Communists

The Catholic Church, unfortunately, has been a fellow traveler in the global movement to regulate individual success, opportunity, and freedom out of existence for the great majority of mankind, through authoritarian control exerted under the wafer-thin guise of promoting “equality.”

And while we’re at it, you can replace the word “Africa” with “Latin America” in Paul Theroux’s essay,

Africa has the schools, the money and the resources to fix its own problems; it’s appalling to think of donors telling them otherwise, of the whole continent terminally indebted and living on handouts.

and you’ll be right.

Good news, bad news

Thursday, January 12th, 2012

The good news:
Chile ranks seventh in the Index of Economic Freedom.

The bad news:
The USA slipped into tenth place.

The role of economic freedom: