It’s been said that the road to hell is paved with good intentions – and that’s not all you’ll find on the road to hell.
While they’re undeniably in ruin now, as Venezuela drove down the road to serfdom, there was no shortage of liberal cheerleaders praising their descent into becoming a socialist hellhole. The nation is now suffering shortages of electricity, water, and even food to the extent that citizens are padlocking their refrigerators.
The economy shrank 18 percent last year, unemployment tops 25 percent (for some context, unemployment peaked at 24.9 percent during the American great depression), and inflation tops 2000 percent.
As a quick reminder on whose political commentary never to take seriously again, here’s a summary of those “prophetic” pundits:
Filmmaker Michael Moore
The documentary filmmaker who’s long-praised Cuba’s healthcare system was proud of the socialist reforms Venezuela had made under Castro. In 2013, he tweeted out the following praise
Hugo Chavez declared the oil belonged 2 the ppl. He used the oil $ 2 eliminate 75% of extreme poverty, provide free health & education 4 all
— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) March 6, 2013
Former Mr. Madonna, Sean Penn
What kind of list would this be without a clueless Hollywood liberal?
Actor Sean Penn has long praised Hugo Chavez prior to his passing, at one time stating that “(Chávez) is a fascinating guy. He’s done… incredible things for the 80 percent of the people that are very poor there.”Following the death of Chavez, Penn expressed confidence that “Venezuela and its revolution will endure under the proven leadership of vice president Maduro.”
Well, that didn’t happen.
Author Noam Chomsky
Between 1980 and 1992, Noam Chomsky boasted the title of the most-cited person in the world, with 3,874 citations to him in the arts and humanities. He’s without a doubt the most known public intellectual on the Left – and it will forever remain a mystery why.
The man has seldom been right about anything, and you can add Venezuela to the list of things he’s gotten wrong. Chomsky supported the Chavez regime, particularly its anti-Americanism, believing that Chavez brought forward the “historic liberation of Latin America” proving “destructive to the rich oligarchy.” He also dismissed claims that Chavez had suppressed freedom of the press.
Chomsky had been a major influence on Chavez, with the two meeting in person on numerous occasions, and Chavez going as far as to plug Chomsky’s work at the UN.
Journalist David Sirota
To give you the idea of where Sirota stands on the political spectrum, a favorite headline of mine was one he ran in Salon.com: “Let’s hope the Boston Marathon bomber is a white American.”
His headline there is about as hilarious in hindsight as one he ran on Venezuela months prior.
Senator Bernie Sanders
Defenders of Sanders’ economic illiteracy loved to point out that he wasn’t your father’s socialist, he was a “democratic socialist.”
Unbeknownst to those making this argument, Sanders was happy to praise your typical undemocratic socialist tyrant. In an essay lamenting income inequality in America, Senator Sanders declared: “These days, the American dream is more apt to be realized in South America, in places such as Ecuador, Venezuela and Argentina, where incomes are actually more equal today than they are in the land of Horatio Alger.”
Yes – everyone is indeed equally miserable.
Of course, things didn’t need to be this way in Venezuela. Chile went against the grain in South America and adopted free-market capitalism in the 1980s – and it’s extremely clear what happened to them relative to the rest of Venezuela, and South America, afterwards.
— HumanProgress.org (@humanprogress) April 17, 2016
But don’t tell a liberal any of that. They’ll only get angry.
[Note: This post was authored by Matt Palumbo. Follow him on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]