General Motors’ automobile assembly plant in Venezuela has been seized by the socialist regime of President Nicolas Maduro. Assembled cars were taken off the lot, no doubt to be distributed to Maduro’s cronies. GM has promised to protest in the courts and otherwise pursue all legal action. One can only say good luck with that. Maduro is presiding over an increasingly failed state in which he jails dissidents and takes private property at will. It is even arresting pastry chefs. One of the only reasons that the good people of Venezuela have not dragged Maduro out of his presidential palace and strung him up from a lamp post is that they are too weak from hunger to stage a revolution..
Hot Air has a great analysis about how the seizure represents a desperate end game for the socialist regime. The auto plant, because its managers are fleeing the country, there are no raw materials to make cars, and no one in the country can afford a new vehicle anyway, is all but worthless. The workers that GM used to employ at the plant are out of luck, but then so are the vast majority of the people of Venezuela in any case.
One aspect that the takeover highlights is the danger of outsourcing to #Developing World countries where the rule of law is not quite as strong as is the case in the #United States. To be sure, America has some fringe politicians such as Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren who might be tempted to seize the means of production given a chance. But they are not likely to get enough power to do such a thing. In any case, the American left approaches the control of the economy by imposing regulations, leaving nominal ownership of companies in the hands of the private sector.
That way there are no state-owned industries that have to be managed by the government.
If Donald Trump does not tweet a “see I told you so” message, it will be a great surprise to everyone. He achieved office by being a foe of outsourcing and an advocate of bringing jobs homes to America. He based his position on how unfair he feels the practice is for American workers. Now he can also point out that companies take a risk as well in locating plants outside the United States. You can outsource to a country like Mexico or Venezuela, but not only will you get slapped with a tariff but you may lose your entire investment if a crazy person like Maduro takes power. It might be better to remain in the United States and exchange slighly higher labor costs for having ones property secured. Besides, automation is going to make all that moot anyway.