On January 28, Rev. Sirico interviewed Ricardo Ball, a financial adviser and entrepreneur in Venezuela, who gave an in-depth examination of the failure of socialism – live from the streets of Caracas. They discussed empty shelves, swelling streets teeming with oppressed Venezuelans yearning to break free and the role of the military in cementing Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro’s despotic rule.
Ball explained how the resistance movement led by the National Assembly President Juan Guaidó does not represent a coup but the actions of a constitutionally elected officer reversing a fraudulent election.
“I think the important point that has been made here is to connect this experiment over 16 years with real socialism,” Rev. Sirico said as he concluded Monday’s livestream broadcast. “This is socialism. This is not an aberration of socialism. It’s its logic being fulfilled.”
Hugo Chavez received global adulation when he began to refer to his economic policies as socialist. UK Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, who could be the next prime minister of our closest ally, insisted that Chavez “showed us that there is a different, and a better, way of doing things. It’s called socialism.”
As with previous socialist idols such as Cuba, some apologists blame U.S. sanctions against the nation. Yet the economy had already contracted one-third by the time the sanctions were imposed.
Now, Noam Chomsky insists Venezuela never enacted real socialism. Among other things, Venezuela’s “state capitalist government” did not go far enough in imposing capital controls.
It is precisely to avoid this question that socialists continually recast previous utopias as inevitable disappointments. These truths cannot be repeated too loudly or too often.
Ball had a crisp answer when Rev. Sirico asked, “What can we do to help?”
“Just retransmit the truth,” he said.
Watch a recording of the full interview below: