You can just imagine what Venezuela's botanical garden looks like

Is there anything awful socialism can't do?

Reuters has an excellent piece (other than omitting the 's' word) about the terrible fate of Venezuela's priceless botanical garden in Caracas.

CARACAS (Reuters) - Dead palm trees and a dried-up lagoon are what you see when you enter Caracas’s botanical garden. A UNESCO World Heritage site and once one of the city’s most important tourist spots, its directors are trying to rescue it from abandonment.

Yes, I know, the country has far more hellish problems with people starving, fleeing, running out of water, and using machetes on one another to fight for garbage scraps.

But the destruction of nature is terrible, too. The botanical garden doesn't even rate as high as zoo animals starving on the mercy scale, yet it's deeply disturbing. The Reuters story says the famed Moriche palms of the area have crumbled and dried up, along with one third of its palms. The gargantuan Santa Cruz water lilies, with pads so huge they can support a small child, have all died. Socialist price and currency controls, along with free-spending inflation, last seen clocking in at north of 41,000%, has left the garden with a $66 (with no zeros) operating budget. It obviously is not going to survive unless there's regime change.

I find this immensely sad. It's part of a long continuum of socialist war with nature, the warlike resul that gave us the ruin of Aral Sea, the black rivers of China, te ugliness of Norilsk nickel, and the wasteland of Cuba's once prominent citrus groves and tobacco fields. Now it's hit Venezuela, and not just the oil fields, and not just the nature reserves, described here in 2005. I actually went to the damaged Venezuelan nature reserve, Hato Pinero, in late 2005, and saw the damage, learned how the then-starving locals were eating the parrots. No nation with this kind of bounteous natural treasure should not have some kind of botanical garden to showcase its wonders, reminding the country of its vast inheritance, delighting its visitors, and teaching kids about it. In any normal society, even a poor one, a botanical garden is always possible. Just not a socialist one.

Socialism is why Venezuela cannot have nice things. Will Bernie Sanders and his new sidekick, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ever notice that? Don't hold your breath. And the greenies, of course, are perfectly silent.

Image Credit: Bernard DuPont, via Flickr // CC By-SA 2.0

Is there anything awful socialism can't do?

Reuters has an excellent piece (other than omitting the 's' word) about the terrible fate of Venezuela's priceless botanical garden in Caracas.

CARACAS (Reuters) - Dead palm trees and a dried-up lagoon are what you see when you enter Caracas’s botanical garden. A UNESCO World Heritage site and once one of the city’s most important tourist spots, its directors are trying to rescue it from abandonment.

Yes, I know, the country has far more hellish problems with people starving, fleeing, running out of water, and using machetes on one another to fight for garbage scraps.

But the destruction of nature is terrible, too. The botanical garden doesn't even rate as high as zoo animals starving on the mercy scale, yet it's deeply disturbing. The Reuters story says the famed Moriche palms of the area have crumbled and dried up, along with one third of its palms. The gargantuan Santa Cruz water lilies, with pads so huge they can support a small child, have all died. Socialist price and currency controls, along with free-spending inflation, last seen clocking in at north of 41,000%, has left the garden with a $66 (with no zeros) operating budget. It obviously is not going to survive unless there's regime change.

I find this immensely sad. It's part of a long continuum of socialist war with nature, the warlike resul that gave us the ruin of Aral Sea, the black rivers of China, te ugliness of Norilsk nickel, and the wasteland of Cuba's once prominent citrus groves and tobacco fields. Now it's hit Venezuela, and not just the oil fields, and not just the nature reserves, described here in 2005. I actually went to the damaged Venezuelan nature reserve, Hato Pinero, in late 2005, and saw the damage, learned how the then-starving locals were eating the parrots. No nation with this kind of bounteous natural treasure should not have some kind of botanical garden to showcase its wonders, reminding the country of its vast inheritance, delighting its visitors, and teaching kids about it. In any normal society, even a poor one, a botanical garden is always possible. Just not a socialist one.

Socialism is why Venezuela cannot have nice things. Will Bernie Sanders and his new sidekick, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ever notice that? Don't hold your breath. And the greenies, of course, are perfectly silent.

Image Credit: Bernard DuPont, via Flickr // CC By-SA 2.0