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Hugo Chavez Destroying his Country's Oil Industry

Mary Katharine, who has a great title for her post by the way, pointed me to this post by A.M. Mora y Leon at Publius Pundit who writes that Hugo Chavez's socialist government is destroying Venezuela's oil industry:

Today's El Universal reports an increasingly serious situation with Venezuela's oil supply, which is sure to have implications for its largest buyer, the U.S.

Not only is the country running its oil industry into the ground with fires and accidents, something that's never occurred until these Chavista years, a result of the firing and blacklisting of all of Venezuela's talented and dedicated engineers and managers - who have since been replaced by Chavista operatives known for their political loyalty and not their expertise - intransparency has grown.

Citgo recently announced that it would end supply to gas stations in 10 U.S. states due to the fact that it no longer can internally access enough Venezuelan oil, and the effort to supply these stations with imported oil at world prices was a burden.

El Universal now says that a new report out from Congress suggests that the U.S. needs to prepare for an oil cutoff from Venezuela, because they're betting it's something ahead of us. Whether through Chavez's malice, or Chavez's destruction of the oil fields themselves, it's something we need to get serious about. Venezuela supplies about 12% of the U.S.' energy needs, its fifth or sixth biggest supplier, down from number one in 1998, the year Chavez was elected president of Venezuela.

This can't be said enough: we need to drill for oil in ANWR and off the coast of Florida and California. Every barrel we can drill ourselves is one less barrel that we are required to get from nutjob dictators such as Chavez.

Comments (25)

And we have Bill Clinton to... (Below threshold)
Bill M:

And we have Bill Clinton to thank for not having NWR on line right now. Bill Clinton, the "gift" that just keeps on giving. The thought of him being allowed back even near the White House should make all of us shudder.

Bill M:Actually, I... (Below threshold)
USMC Pilot:

Bill M:

Actually, I believe we have ourselves to blame.
We keep sending the same knukleheads back to congress again and again. He might be an asshole but he's my asshole, is the prevailing sentiment at the voting booth. My recent post about the mentallity of the American people applies here also.

The interesting thing about... (Below threshold)

The interesting thing about Venezuela potentially cutting off the US is that not all refineries can process their crude oil. The oil is considered a sour crude. It's high in sulfur and very heavy. Most refineries use a lighter crude. The US refineries can refine it, but that's not true everywhere in the world. It's in the Venezuela's best interest to continue to sell here. My guess is that it's a lot of hot air from Chavez.

There's good news and bad n... (Below threshold)

There's good news and bad news about the far left. The good news is that when they finally get their way, they ultimately destroy themselves. The bad news is that human race never seems to learn the lesson.

Yes, it is a lack of foresi... (Below threshold)

Yes, it is a lack of foresight in Congress that has us "over a barrel." Hopefully the caribou in Alaska are happy with the result (not that they were threatened to start with).

We have several friends from Venezuela. It is very bad there. The bizarre result is that one who claims to be the saviour of the Poor, is driving the country into the ground. They'll be no inequality, because no one will have anything in a few years from now.

Lessons for our leftist friends in the U.S.? They don't learn these lessons. We need a "no liberal left behind" policy to teach them economics they didn't learn or weren't taught in school.

Hmmm.He m... (Below threshold)


He might be an asshole but he's my asshole

That phrase sings on so many levels. Read one way it has one meaning. Read another way ... and ... it has a completely different meaning.

Sir. You are a poet. But a disturbed one.

While it is true that not m... (Below threshold)

While it is true that not many countries can process Venezuelian crude, Venezuela is building more refineries and is preparing to ship refined components, not crude. Iran is building a refinery in Venezuela, for example. It looks like Venezuela and adjusting who it wants to ship to.

I have also be puzzled by the Citgo commercials on Fox News recently wondering why Fox would run advertizements for the Venezuelian oil monopoly.

Any american who buys gas a... (Below threshold)

Any american who buys gas at a CITGO station should be required to say three Our Fathers and four Hail Marys before leaving the station, simultaneously promising to do penance and amend his/her life. amen.

This is nothing but good ne... (Below threshold)

This is nothing but good news. Chavez loses his oil, then he loses his country.

Yes, in the end, the reduce... (Below threshold)

Yes, in the end, the reduced production from Venezuela - which dates back into early in Chavez' first term, and accelerated after the failed coup attempt - will hurt Venezuela far more than the US.

Oil is fungible. It is traded on open markets. If we buy less from Venezuela, we will buy more from someone else. The "Arab Oil Boycott" in the '70s failed miserably for just this reason. The only way a country can truly deprive the US, or "the West," or any other customer its product is by not selling ANY to anyone, and none of the oil producing nations can afford to do that for a month.

The good news is that whenever Chavez falls, Venezuela oil can be quickly brought back online, so long as his cronies are purged with him.

Chavez is fungible? and Ana... (Below threshold)

Chavez is fungible? and Anan-lley irreversibly by the dashboard lights unforgivable!

Kofi: Im all out of love?

FYI:TEHRAN (AFP) -... (Below threshold)


TEHRAN (AFP) - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez will arrive in Iran for talks with his counterpart and fellow America critic Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, his Tehran office has said.

Spokesman Ehsan Jahandide told AFP the two leaders would focus on "bilateral relations and a review of previous agreements, and before he leaves Tehran a number of agreements will be signed."

Chavez is also due to open a new Venezuelan embassy in Tehran, meet Iranian business leaders and receive an honorary medal from Tehran University. No further details were given.

The two-day visit will be Chavez's fourth to the Islamic republic since 2000. The Iranian and Venezuelan leaders are both fierce critics of the US administration as well as being
OPEC members.

A communist and an idiot, w... (Below threshold)

A communist and an idiot, what can one expect. Sooner or later this crap will collapse once they can no longer produce enough oil to support them and unlike Fidel there are no sugar daddies for Hugo. It will end in a blood bath I fear.

Questions such as this (dri... (Below threshold)

Questions such as this (drilling in ANWR) are not a matter of do or don't do (drill or don't drill). They are a matter of weighing two options against one another. We either drill in ANWR or we continue to buy more oil from despots that are hostile to us who will eventually put the money we've paid them into attempts to destroy us.

- MikeB

An interesting side note, I... (Below threshold)

An interesting side note, I noticed a few weeks back several reports from different sources that Venezuela is actually buying Russian oil in order to avoid defaulting on supply contracts. So while Hugo may be planning to change who he sells to and where it gets refined, it seems the Venezuelan oil industry is in fact being run into the ground.

...Hate to break the news t... (Below threshold)

...Hate to break the news to the 82nd Chairborne Brigade here but the likelihood of Chavez "crumbling" with oil reserves 5 times as high as Saudi Arabia is about as plausible as Noelle Bush passing a urine test.
Granted, the extraction of Venezuelan oil reserves is more costly, that didn't stop Chavez from offering crude to the U.S. at 50.00 a barrel -meaning a price drop of $1.00 per gallon of gas at American pump stations.
But our avid My Pet Goat reader declined the offer since Chavez (unlike our head-lopping Saudi allies) intends to keep the petro-dollars in Latin America, not in the Federal Reserve.

Hmmm, why all that hostility towards Venezuela anyway? -surely that failed coup attempt didn't help much.

If the tireless researcher over at the PJ would fucking bother to read the whole article cited they would see that:

""Should the refineries -Lake Charles, Paulsboro and Savannah- be sold, long-term Venezuelan crude oil supply agreements will be kept. Our core business in the United States is to place crude oil and by-products, not necessarily to own facilities."

Not exactly a doomsday scenario for Venezuela.

-Such is to be expected over at PantLoad media- People who are too lazy to research and too lazy to write for people too lazy to read.

I would bet on a military c... (Below threshold)

I would bet on a military coup d'etat at some point. Chavey isn't just an evil dictator, he's an insane one. There is speculation among fairly well-placed folks that he suffers from some sort of mental problem, likely manic depressive disorder.

Once he starts pushing his military to use the new Kalishnikovs and fighter jets in S. America, I suspect the folks with the guns might want to turn them against him, especially if the economy goes to hell.

DDT, the stuff must be affe... (Below threshold)

DDT, the stuff must be affecting your brain. Reserves are meaningless if you can't produce the oil. Considering Chavez is ruining the state oil company to finance his cronies and Fidel, nationalizing foreign concessions which won't exactly encourage foreigners to bail him out, it will end badly. Venezuelans can be quite violent and Hugo isn't likely to die of natural causes.
Already they are experiencing food shortages, and with decreasing production not enough cash coming in the till to keep everyone happy it will get very ugly.

Hmmmm....... (Below threshold)


...Hate to break the news to the 82nd Chairborne Brigade here but the likelihood of Chavez "crumbling" with oil reserves 5 times as high as Saudi Arabia is about as plausible as Noelle Bush passing a urine test.

The point you failed to address is that the technology and techniques for extracting this oil requires a lot more expertise that is generally found in political sycophants.

Additionally the economy of Venezuala isn't expanding all that well. Sure there's oil money coming in, but that money is largely being spent by Chavez on ego projects.

As for Noelle Bush and urine tests. I find it curious that liberals like you have such a rabid viewpoint about the Bush family, and yet when conservatives criticise a Kennedy for a being a pill-popping drunk you liberals get all bent out of shape.

To those who are brainwashe... (Below threshold)

To those who are brainwashed in believing Chavez is bad, read this : http://www.buzzflash.com/contributors/06/07/con06292.html

I hope some of the hard headed CNN manipulated baby boomers who posted above choose to just for a second, doubt what your government tells you about other countries and maybe see they're not right about everything.

Kevin:the article ... (Below threshold)


the article inspired me to always purchase gas a citgo

Actually, Venezuela current... (Below threshold)

Actually, Venezuela currently has among the cheapest gas prices in the entire world. The Economist recently reported that gas prices are about 50 cents a litre in Venezuela (May 6 - 12 Economist, p. 102).

If Venezuela was so short in supply, you would think it would show.

This article is propoganda. So long as the Chavez government remains democratic, I suggest you go be activists in undemocratic US allies such as Saudi arabia and Pakistan.

To those who are brainwashe... (Below threshold)

To those who are brainwashed in believing Chavez is bad, read this : http://www.buzzflash.com/contributors/06/07/con06292.html

I hope some of the hard headed CNN manipulated baby boomers who posted above choose to just for a second, doubt what your government tells you about other countries and maybe see they're not right about everything.

Posted by: Kevin at July 28, 2006 02:07 PM------And I suppose the fact that he (Chavez) has murdered his political opponents doesn't bother you. Dictators and tyrants are the leaders you liberals love best, especially if they murder their political opponents. I particularly appreciate your going after the Bush daughters. WHAT A GUY!!!! So tell me, is there anything you have ever done or thought that isn't beneath contempt? Never mind. The question answers itself.

Speaking of dictators or ty... (Below threshold)

Speaking of dictators or tyrants, Hugo Chavez has won half a dozen elections, has no secret prisons, and hasn`t invaded anyone.

These South & Central Ameri... (Below threshold)

These South & Central American popcorns come and go. They get their 10 years of fame, overplay their hand and it's 'desaparecido'. Whether it's Noriega or some so-called General from Argentina, they become mere footnotes to history.

I would like to see one (1) hombre actually end up helping the people in Venezuela or any country in the southern hemisphere....just one! The closet would be Castro in our hemisphere, but he too began believing it was all about him as he started adventuring out and about and now he's a little short of cash and allies. They all start out with the same political gibberish and end up being crooks.






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