Venezuela’s socialist government hopes increased tourism will help replace oil revenue, in their “collapsing” economy. But even the Washington Post was skeptical on Jan. 12, writing, “Yet for a country saddled with the world’s highest inflation rate and rampant violence, Becoming a tourist paradise may be as improbable as a new Disney theme park in Damascus.”
“Tourism is the oil that never runs out,” Venezuela’s tourism minister Marleny Contreras said recently. But the newspaper found hotel managers like Vanessa Sojo disagreed with Contreras. Business at Sojo’s hotel “slid by 80 percent” in 2017 as international airports stopped flying to Venezuela and the U.S. and other European countries issued travel warnings.
Hotels and restaurants, necessities for tourists are “jacking up prices almost daily,” due to the 3,000 percent inflation rate, the Post reported. Basic products are now so scarce and costly, hotel owners have resorted to “rationing toilet paper.” They also began forcing guests to sign detailed inventory lists to keep “crisis-battered” Venezuelans from stealing things like towels, lightbulbs and coffee makers.
But the liberal newspaper ignored socialism’s role in ravaging Venezuela for a long time. In 2016, the editorial board even criticized Venezuela for being a complete economic failure, but refused to admit socialism’s responsibility for the fiasco.
The broadcast networks also ignored the socialism-driven economic collapse of Venezuela. Between March 2013 and May 2017, ABC, CBS and NBC evening news shows only aired 25 stories on Venezuela. Of those, only seven included the word “socialism.”