Over the past 15 years, at least 1.6 million citizens from Venezuela have emigrated. As the country continues to struggle with economic and political chaos, it is now facing triple-digit inflation. Many citizens these days are forced to wait in long lines in order to obtain basic necessities like toilet paper, food, and other items. The country is facing alarming scarcity of basic household supplies and crime in the country has drastically increased and now has the world's second-highest murder rate.
“I don't think you will find a single Venezuelan who has not been affected by Chavez's regime. After 30 years of working I have a right to a tranquil, peaceful retirement, not to spend hours every day in a line. This is not quality of life,” said 56-year-old former school worker Tamara Flores.
As more citizens continue to become disgruntled over the worsening conditions in the nation, the ruling socialist administration is increasingly facing surging popularity for the opposition. In December, the opposition legislators were able to secure 112 seats for themselves, giving themselves a two-thirds majority in a congress that hasn't been this combative in more than 15 years. They now have the power to remove cabinet members, call for referendums, and appoint Supreme Court judges. However, they could be facing a loss of their two-thirds advantage, if a newly launched Supreme Court challenge on the electoral results for three opposition members is found to be successful. But it's clear that there is increasing discontent over the worsening economic conditions within the country and many citizens are desperately looking for a solution to be found.
It is reported that some citizens are too scared to leave their homes and those who do face the potential of being fingerprinted in order to check that they have not exceeded their individual rations. Venezuela is yet another example of socialism failing right before our very eyes. But not everyone in the country sees it that way despite the ongoing failure, there are still some devout socialists in the country who remain dedicated to former leader Hugo Chavez and his brand of politics.
“I wouldn't recommend this system to anybody,” said Tamara Flores. “It changed so much after Chavez took charge. Our quality of life was lost. The quality of our education was lost. Every day is a challenge. Finding food staples, leaving home and returning with my life and without being robbed. It's very difficult and sad,” she said. And she isn't the only one with harsh words to share. “Socialism has not made things develop well in public organizations like hospitals, the police, the fire brigade. There is corruption and total disorganization. I do blame the system. The people who made this mess are corrupt,” said 26-year-old primary school teacher Nory Munoz.
In a recent survey conducted by Datincorp, it was found that political prisoner Leopoldo Lopez had the majority support from the citizenry at 32 percent, while President Nicolas Maduro was found to have only 21 percent and opposition Henrique Capriles to have just 12 percent. Dissatisfaction has been growing in the country for years and it's clear that the people want a change and they want to see an improvement to their standard of living.
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