Under the classic Marxist theory, history is making an inexorable progression from feudalism to capitalism to socialism and, at last, to communism. Venezuela seems to have turned that theory on its head. The government has decreed that everyone can be drafted to work 60 days in the fields or even more “as needed” as a way to alleviate the chronic shortages of food that is gripping that socialist country. The decree means that Venezuela has brought back feudal serfdom, but with the state as the lord of the manor and everyone as the peasants, even middle-class white collar workers.

The next stage will be to bring back Roman-style slavery.

The end game can play out one of two ways. Either Venezuela descends into Ethiopia-style famine or the current government will be overthrown by force, either by a military coup or an invasion from outside.

As CNN Money pointed out, Venezuela once had a vibrant agricultural sector. But starting in the mid-1990s, the policies of Hugo Chavez began to change all of that. Heedless of the real cause of the current crisis, Chavez’s successor, Nicolas Maduro, is trapped in his own ideology, trying desperately to prop up a failed system instead of throwing it out altogether and returning to a free market.

No one knows when the breaking point is going to happen. Inevitably, Venezuela’s problems will become the world’s problems. In the best case scenario, some general takes over, executes Maduro and his associates, and begs for foreign assistance while he rebuilds his country. Either President Obama or his successor will be obliged to send emergency food shipments to Venezuela to bridge the gap for when that country can repair its agricultural infrastructure.

Here is one off the wall suggestion. The American president, whoever he or she happens to be, should call for young people, the sort who think socialism is a good idea, to join a Peace Corps effort to help get Venezuela back on its feet. The experience will not only be good for both countries but will provide a sobering education for the volunteers on the wages of socialism and an overreaching government.

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